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Is it time to start worrying about the Nets record against contending teams?

They say the hallmark of a terrific staff is one that’s ready to win the video games it is meant to win. 

Brooklyn has sufficient expertise to win the video games it’s supposed to, and so they’ve performed that simply sufficient to keep atop the East standings, but when they need to compete for an NBA title, they want to work out how they are going to win these video games that are not essentially assured wins. 

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The Nets dropped Sunday’s recreation against the Bulls, 111-107, their second loss to their convention rival in the final month. The Nets dropped to 16-7 on the season, simply half a recreation in entrance of the Bulls, and 1.5 video games in entrance of the surging Milwaukee Bucks, who’ve lastly received their staff wholesome once more.  

Brooklyn has not fared properly this season against groups they are going to possible see in the playoffs. On opening night time, they received pummelled by the defending champs, they beat the 76ers just a few nights later, however since then have misplaced to Charlotte, Miami, Chicago (twice), Golden State and Phoenix. 

The Nets are actually 0-6 against contending groups. Hardly championship high quality. 

“It’s very early for this group,” Nets Coach Steve Nash said recently. “We’ve had multiple guys injured. We have 10 new players. A lot of guys with different backgrounds, different histories, different habits trying to blend together.”

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To be honest, Brooklyn in all probability did not anticipate to be with out Kyrie Irving as they ready in the low season, and Nash has had to scramble and check out to work out his rotations on the fly, however a staff with names comparable to Kevin Durant and James Harden on its roster ought to nonetheless have sufficient expertise to compete with the higher echelon of the NBA. 

The play of Harden has been most regarding this season, nevertheless. Harden shot simply 5-of-21 from the area for 14 factors to go together with 14 assists on Sunday. 

The nine-time All-Star is averaging 20.9 factors per recreation this season, his lowest output since the 2011-12 season when he was nonetheless with Oklahoma. Brooklyn is 9-2 this season when James Harden scores 20 or extra factors in a recreation, 5-0 when Harden scores 25 or extra factors and are simply 7-5 when Harden scores beneath 20 factors.

Those numbers are telling — if Brooklyn is to have any probability of beating contending groups with out Irving, it might be essential that Harden rediscovers the kind that earned him an MVP trophy in 2018. 

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The Nets now put together for a four-game highway journey against Houston, Dallas, Atlanta and Detroit. While most of these could be assured wins on paper, the Nets have discovered that video games will not be truly performed on paper, however somewhat in real-life arenas. 

The views on this web page don’t essentially mirror the views of the NBA or its golf equipment.

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