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
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
Last night was another close game, but it still turned up as another loss. Even though it was a L, there were a lot of things that could be taken away from last night’s game.
- Well, we didn’t reach our 100 point mark, and they is due mainly to a terrible first half. The Nets only put up 38 points in the first half, and we were trailing 54-38. The lack of scoring is understandable, in the first half, Lawrence Frank was giving minutes to players who weren’t used to playing too much (Yi and Josh Boone for example). In the second half, the Nets scored 55 points in the second half, and in my opinion, this is attributed to Frank riding the hot hands.
- The man leading all exit polls for Most Improved Player (yes they have those), Devin Harris, re-injured his shoulder, and sat out most of the second half. This turned out to be a blessing in disguise though, CDR got to see more minutes, and I was very impressed with his play.
- As I just mentioned, I was very impressed with CDR’s play last night. He doesn’t look the smoothest, but the kid knows how to play, and he just gets the job done. Last night, his line was 31 minutes, 16 points, and 4 assists.
- The other two rookies played pretty well too. Brook, before fouling out put up 16 and 7. Ryan Anderson dropped 20 points.
- Now the bad. Yi only got 7 minutes and while he had 4 points, it seems like the Nets have made their decision on him. It looks like the Nets will be looking for a 4 in the draft.