The Nets Are Scorching

Last Post Here.

Hey guys, I just wanted to let you know that this is going to be the last post we do here…because we are moving to a new domain!  Ha!  I totally tricked all of you, I mean you should see the look on your face!  Anyway you can find all the new posts over here:

The Nets Are Scorching

I am going to be leaving this site up though, so if you want to read through the old stuff, you will be able to.

April 16, 2009 Posted by | Updates | Leave a comment

Season Finale Preview: NJ Nets vs. New York Knicks

Alright, the game at 8:00 tonight, and the YES coverage will be able to been seen on YES.  No YES2 for us tonight.  That goes to the Knicks broadcast…suckers…

  • We have beat the Knicks 2 out of 3 so far, and it would be nice to end the season on a win.
  • The Nets blew out the Knicks at the Garden in their last meeting, so maybe this is a good sign.
  • The Nets are 4-6 in their last 10, while the Knicks are 3-7.
  • The Nets are 15-25 on the road, while the Knicks are 19-21 at home.

Nets Starting Lineup

I am left to guess our lineup one more time.  I am not expecting Vince Carter or Keyon Dooling to play due to their injuries.  We will see what happens though

  • PG – Devin Harris
  • SG – CDR
  • SF – Bobby Simmons ???
  • PF – Ryan Anderson
  • C – Brook Lopez

Celtics Starting Lineup

  • PG – Chris Duhon
  • SG – Wilson Chandler
  • SF – Jared Jefferies
  • PF – Al Harrington
  • C – David Lee

Their Mismatches

  • Wilson Chandler vs. CDR -  Now CDR is a pretty good defender.  He sure did give Rip a hell of a time against the Pistons.  The only this is that Rip Hamilton is just as thin as CDR is.  Wilson Chandler is a thick boy, if the Knicks were smart, they will be throwing the ball down low to Chandler a ton.

Our Mismatches

Brook Lopez vs. David Lee – Now David Lee is a fantastic rebounder, but he does not have the size that Brook Lopez has.  Brook Lopez should be able to overpower him in the post, and if he gets the minutes, I see him having another 20-10 game tonight.

Key Matchup

  • Nets Offense vs. Knicks Offense -  There  is no real nice way to say this, but both of these defenses suck.  They can’t pressure the ball and they don’t really challenge shooters.  This game is ultimately going to come downn to who can hit more jumpers, hopefully it can be the Nets.

Final Random Thoughts

  • I hate the Knicks.  What was a father – son rivalry turned into a deep seeded hatred, I get angry whenever they win.
  • A loss may get us more ping pong balls, but like I said, I want this team to go out winning.
  • Who knows what the Knicks are going to do with their rotation, but they will be playing to win this game in the Garden.
  • I hope Brook Lopez steps on Nate Robinson.

The Result

  • The Nets win this game, I don’t have to punch my TV, and we close out the season on a 3 game winning streak.

April 15, 2009 Posted by | Game Previews | 1 Comment

Yi Wins An Award

It’s just not a good one.  With the season winding down, you have a lot of national media writers posting their awards and such.  Steve Aschburner from Si.com did this as well, just with a little twist.  He gave out awards for the bad of the NBA season.  Included was his pick of Least Improved Player…Yi:

Yeah, right. It was Milwaukee’s fault and its lack of Chinese culture and limited opportunities afforded by former Bucks coach Larry Krystkowiak and … and … and … The excuses can’t hide the fact that Yi has had ample opportunities with the Nets this season and has frittered away most of them. Yi has played himself out of New Jersey’s starting lineup and is averaging only 5.7 points since the All-Star break. He is shooting 38.5 percent for the season, to which we can only say, “Yao!”

If you can for a minute, lets ignore the terrible pun at the end.  Yes, Yi has been awful, and he has probably deserved this award, but Steve Aschburner fails to point out some key information in this post.  He mentions the PPG after the All-Star break, well that’s convient, he has been hurt and his minutes have been cut.  All I am saying is if you are going to bash players like this, at least be accurate (or explain why he only had 5.7 points after the All-Star break) in your bashing.  But like I said, yes Yi has been awful this year.

April 14, 2009 Posted by | Awards, National Media, Yi Jianlian | Leave a comment

Vince Carter Sees Himself A Net Next Year

Dave D’Alessandro reported this yesterday, but I am just getting around posting about it.  It seems that Vince Carter sees himself staying in New Jersey for at least another season.  When he was asked if he did anything differently stepping off of the court of the IZod center (because it could be the last time he does so), Carter responded:

“Naaah, That’ll jinx you.”

Jinx is a funny word to use there, does that mean he wants to play on that court again?

“If you approach it that way, all of a sudden you say, ‘If I didn’t do that, it would have been different,’ As far as I know, I’ll be here next year, that’s why I’m trying to do what I have to do for this team — to keep us together and build something for next year.”

When asked about if he still believes he can reach a his goal of becoming a champion as a Net, Vince brought up the Celtics of last year.

“But you never know, I don’t think Boston felt that way three or four years ago. They asked Paul Pierce the same thing, and then they made the trades. So anything is possible.”

This is an interesting quote, does VC know about some trades the Nets are going to attempt to make?  As Vince said, you never know.  Back to his quote though, it’s all well and good for a player to want to stay here, but it’s Rod Thorn’s opinion that matters.  What is that opinion?

“I think he has several really good years left, as long as he keeps himself in top condition. If he mentally wants to do it, he has several top-flight years left.”

In the end, all these quotes mean one thing.  That Vince Carter will be back wearing a Nets uniform next year.  I know everyone takes shot of his lack of toughness and his love of settling for jumpers (Myself included), but he is without question the leader of this team, and we would struggle to make up for the production we lose if we lose him. Another plus of keeping is that we know what direction we want to go to in the draft.  Right now there is talk of drafting a 3 or a 4.  Now that we know Vince is more than likely staying, we can draft a 4, develop a real nice frontcourt, and worry about getting a 3 of the future  (even though I already believe he is here – CDR Baby!  Woot!)  in later drafts.  Everything next year will just be easier if Vince is a Net.

April 14, 2009 Posted by | Offseason, Quotes, Rod Thorn, Vince Carter | 1 Comment

Game 81 Recap : NJ Nets 91 – Charlotte Bobcats 87

Welp, another win, this time against a lackluster Charlotte team.  I know a lot of Nets fans are rooting for losses so we can get more ping pong balls.  I am 100% against this for three reasons:

  1. These games are obviously important to the players.  Vince Carter has been going hard, and Devin Harris even returned and played a lot of minutes in this game.  These guys are competitors and they want to get as many wins as they can.
  2. We end the season on a good note, and this leaves everyone with a good taste in their mouth for the offseason.  Now I know you don’t think this is too important, but on a team as young as the Nets, it is.  We have 3 rookies who plan on contributing a lot next season, and if we finish the year on a good note, and that makes them want to work harder in the offseason, its definitely a plus.
  3. Karma.  What?  I am serious…take last year for example, there were a ton of teams tanking last year to try and get in the Derrick Rose sweepstakes, and what happened, none of those teams got there.  It was the Bulls who ended up with the #1 pick (the odds had them picking 9th).  Now I know we probably won’t be bumped up to the #1 pick, but who knows, maybe we get a top 5 pick without tanking the final two (now 1) games.

/rant.  Anyway, on to the recap:

  • This isn’t a win to be too proud of.  Despite not really having a bench, the Bobcats used one, playing 9 guys over 20 minutes.  That team isn’t 9 deep, that’s for sure.  Well, a win’s a win, right?
  • Devin Harris played and played pretty well considering the bum shoulder.  In 31 minutes, he had 11 points and 4 assists.
  • Yi is still getting minutes (18 tonight) but he still isn’t showing up.  Maybe he mailed in the season after the injury, but Lawrence Frank just keeps putting him out there as if to say “look, you are getting minutes and still not producing.”  He scored just 1 point while going 0-5 from the field.
  • CDR had another solid, not spectacular game.  I know a lot of people don’t agree with me, but I see this guy becoming the second coming of The Matrix.  Shawn Marion played like this for a while before he broke out, and I can’t wait to continue watching this guy develop and grow into a starter.
  • BROOK!  Brook had a monstrous game tonight.  18 points and 20 boards (8 offensive).  Brook haters/doubters are going to say look who he is playing against, but you can’t take this performance away from him.  This was a great game, and Brook is finishing his rookie season strong.  Now let’s just hope he wins the rookie of the year.

We have 1 more game, against the Knicks after tomorrow’s off day.  It will be nice finishing the year off beating those guys…

April 13, 2009 Posted by | Game Recaps | Leave a comment

Game 81 Preview: Charlotte Bobcats vs. New Jersey Nets

Alright, the game at 8:00 tonight, coverage starting at 7:30.  The game will be on YES2 again, channel 18 in central Jersey (This is just another reason I hate the Yankees).

  • The season series here is split 1-1, this game is the rubber match.
  • Each team won on the others home court.  The Bobcats beating the Nets by 8 at the Izod Center, and the Nets beating the Bobcats by 11 in Charlotte.
  • The Nets are 3-7 in their last 10, while the Bobcats are 4-6.
  • The Bobcats are 12-27 on the road, while the Nets are 18-22 at home.

Nets Starting Lineup

Now I am just guessing with this line-up.  I don’t think we will be seeing Harris at all, so here is who I think will be starting.  I will let you know if it is any different.

  • PG – Keyon Dooling
  • SG – CDR
  • SF – Vince Carter
  • PF – Ryan Anderson
  • C – Brook Lopez

Celtics Starting Lineup

  • PG – Raymond Felton
  • SG – D.J. Augustin
  • SF – Gerald Wallace
  • PF – Boris Diaw
  • C – Emeka Okafor

Their Mismatches

  • Boris Diaw vs. Ryan Anderson -  For once, Ryan isn’t mismatched here due to the fact that he is an undersized 4.  Boris is about the same size as him.  Boris is a savy vet who can do just about anything from rebounding, to getting assists, and he can even put up points if he has to.  He has a somewhat unorthodox style of play, using a lot of pump fakes and headfakes around the basket.  I think he will get Ryan in early foul trouble.

Our Mismatches

  • Our Bench vs. Their Bench- The Bobcats were just recently eliminated from playoff contention.  That being said, they will probably be giving their starters some rest and their bench will be getting more time.  This is one of the few teams in the NBA that has a weaker bench than the Nets, and we should be able to take advantage.

Key Matchup

  • Vince Carter vs. Gerald Wallace – Gerald Wallace is probably one of the most underrated players in the NBA.  Every night, he matches up against the opposing team’s best scorer (In this case VC), and he does a hell of a job shutting them down.  Now Wallace doesn’t usually put up numbers on the offensive end, but he is a capable scorer.  Anyway, this matchup should be fun to watch when the Nets get the ball.

Final Random Thoughts

  • The Bobcats were just eliminated from the playoffs, so you may see a rotating bench just as the Nets are doing.
  • This is a battle of late-lottery teams, a win by either team can positivly effect the others’ draft position.
  • Yi is going to get under 10 minutes, book it!
  • There is probably going to be a whole lot of Josh Boone/Brook Lopez on the court the same time stuff going on.  It is going to be interesting to see how they play off of each other.

The Result

  • I think we are going to take this one, and extend our winning streak to 2 games.

April 13, 2009 Posted by | Game Previews | Leave a comment

Game 80 Recap (Quick Edition): NJ Nets 103 – Orlando Magic 93

Hope everyone enjoyed their Easter/Passover weekend, I know I did, and that is why I didn’t get this up yesterday, but here goes nothing.

  • Even though Rashard Lewis was sitting this one out (knee tendinitis) and Hedo Turkoglu was out most of the 4th quarter (rolled ankle), this was a good win for the Nets.  We had our own injury (Devin Harris – shoulder), and it is good to see that we aren’t tanking the season away just to get more ping pong balls.
  • I wasn’t too pleased when the Nets brought in Keyon Dooling, mainly because I did not think he was good enough to be a backup for us.  Throughout the year, he has shown that he is in fact very valuable.  Every night he makes me eat my words, and tonight was no different, starting for Devin Harris, Keyon put up 12 points and 10 assists.
  • This was Brookie night, and after a solid first quarter, Lawrence Frank decided to sit Brook most of the second quarter.  Now I know we are playing everybody, but this is Brook’s night, you have to give him some burn.  In the end Brook finished with a double double, 13 points and 11 rebounds in only 21 minutes of play.
  • Boone had a pretty solid game (I personally am still not a fan).  In 27 minutes he put up 11 points and 8 boards.
  • Yi also had some solid minutes tonight (25) but didn’t take advantage.  Although he did have 7 rebounds, Yi only mustered 3 points, and I think it is safe to say that Yi won’t be getting too many more minutes this year after that performance.
  • Ho Hum…Vince Carter 40 minutes 27 points and 9 assists…Ho Hum…
  • I am going to miss having Vince Carter on this team.

April 13, 2009 Posted by | Game Recaps | Leave a comment

Game 79 Preview: Orlando Magic vs. New Jersey Nets

Alright, the game at 8:00 tonight, and since the Yankees aren’t playing tonight, the game is on YES.

  • Orlando is winning the season series vs. the Nets 2-0.
  • Both games were @ Orlando, the first loss was by 17 and the second was by 3.
  • Orlando is 8-2 in their last 10 while the Nets are 2-8.
  • The Magic are 20-20 on the road, while the Nets are 17-22 at home.
  • The Magic are still competing with the Boston Celtics for the #2 seed.  They will be firing on all cylinders against us.

Nets Starting Lineup

Now I am just guessing with this line-up.  I don’t think we will be seeing Harris at all, so here is who I think will be starting.  I will let you know if it is any different.

  • PG – Keyon Dooling
  • SG – CDR
  • SF – Vince Carter
  • PF – Ryan Anderson
  • C – Brook Lopez

Celtics Starting Lineup

  • PG – Rafer Alston
  • SG – Courtney Lee
  • SF – Rashard Lewis
  • PF – Hedo Turkoglu
  • C – Dwight Howard

Their Mismatches

  • Rafer Alston vs. Keyon Dooling – I think Keyon will be playing point for us tonight.  He is not too familiar playing point, but he does have experience.  Rafer Alston does not get enough credit for being a great point guard.  I actually think him playing point for the Magic is an upgrade over Jameer Nelson.  Anyway, I don’t think there is any way Keyon will be able to stay in front of him.

Our Mismatches

  • Vince Carter vs. Courtney Lee – Courtney Lee is a rookie, and I think VC will be able to just be able to out perform him.  He is going to need to take it to the rack though.

Key Matchup

  • Brook Lopez vs. Dwight Howard -This is going to be an awesome matchup.  Dwight Howard is going to be fired up because he had a subpar game against the Knicks.  Brook is going to be fired up because it is Brookie Night!  Fireworks are going to fly.

Final Random Thoughts

  • The Magic were embarrassed by the Knicks last night.  They were flat.  You know that Stan Van Gundy won’t let them be flat tonight.
  • The Nets probably will be giving out more burn to players like CDR and Boone.  Especially with Devin Harris most likely out.
  • Will Yi get time?  I am actually expecting a DNP, but he may see a few minutes.

The Result

  • With the young guys getting more time, and the Magic coming out fired up, I am afraid this will be a blowout.  I am talking 30 points.  We better be careful.

April 11, 2009 Posted by | Game Previews | Leave a comment

Breaking Down The Possession: Game 79 Nets vs. Pistons

I did this last game and got some positive feedback, so I figure I might as well do this for each game (yeah I know there are only 4 left).  Tonight’s possession is late in the 4th quarter, after the Nets cut the lead to 5.  The Pistons come back and Rip drills a three.  What went wrong?  Let’s look at it.

play-start

The Pistons up by 5 with under a minute left, let the shot clock run down before starting the play.  There is 29 secons left in the game and 5 seconds on the shot clock as Will Bynum gets the offense started.  The key players for the Pistons are Will Bynum (covered by Vince Carter), Rip Hamilton (Covered by CDR), and Kwame Brown (Covered by Brook Lopez).  The way the play is set up, it seems like this is going to be an ISO for Bynum (who dropped 20 on us), but what is really happening is that the Pistons were looking to take advantage of our rookies.

play-run

Bynum drives, but not out of control, just enough to force CDR to help.  As CDR takes his eyes off of Rip, Rip starts sliding towards the corner.  As this is happening Kwame Brown is sneaking behind CDR, ready to set a big screen.  This is where the first two mistakes are made.  CDR helps too much, he needs to jab at Will Bynum and mantain eye contact with Rip to make sure he doesn’t get open (The beauty of the play is that there is so little time left on the clock, Bynum’s drive looks like the scoring play to everybody, and that is why CDR helped so much).  Second, Brook Lopez needs to recognize what is happening and he needs to call out the screen.  Watching it in real time, it is obvious that he doesn’t do this.

bynum-pass

Bynum jumps up and makes the pass to Rip Hamilton.  By the time this happens, Brook and CDR finally realize what is going on, but it is too late.  CDR can’t close out on Rip because he is staring right at Kwame Brown’s chest.  Brook realizes what happens too, but it is way too late, and he can’t close out in time.  Rip Hamilton drills the 3, and the game is pretty much over.  Here it is in real time:

Now should have CDR and Brook Lopez recognized the play?  Yes, but the Detroit Pistons did a beautiful thing by singling them out and running the play at them.  In the end, it was a great play, watching this live, I didn’t see it until it was too late too.  You should have seen me yelling at my TV.

April 11, 2009 Posted by | Play Breakdown | 4 Comments

Earl Clark Wants To Play For The Nets

With CDR playing solid, it seems like we won’t be needing to draft a 3 in the first round this year.  Add that to the fact that the Nets aren’t sold on Yi (This is obvious by how much playing time he is receiving down the stretch), the Nets are going to be needing a 4.  If the Nets can’t pull a Chicago Bulls and get the number 1 pick, Earl Clark could be drafted by the Nets.  That’s fine by him:

“I would like to be drafted by the Nets cause I know I would be a good addition to the team”.

Earl played his high school ball in Jersey, and it would be pretty neat to see a Jersey product play for the Nets.  Another interesting note, is that Clark’s agent, Dan Fegan, represents Yi Jianlian, Jarvis Hayes and Eduardo Najera.

April 11, 2009 Posted by | Draft, Earl Clark | Leave a comment

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