Bio: I cover the Brooklyn Nets, the St. John's Red Storm men's basketball team, and the Brooklyn Cyclones. I support the Fort Hamilton Tigers football team, a 3-time city champion. I am a graduate of Fort Hamilton High School (2003) and Brooklyn College (2008).
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By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19 Showcase photo – The NEC Head Coaches at Media Day on Tuesday at Barclays Center, with LIU’s Jack Perri (back row, 2nd on left) and SFC’s Glenn Braica (front row, 2nd on right) by @JESchott19
For the first time in their history, the St. Francis Terriers Men’s Basketball team are the favorite to win the NEC in the preseason coaches’ poll. Conversely, LIU Brooklyn, who won the NEC three straight years from 2011 to 2013, was chosen eight in the poll. This was announced at NEC Social Media Day on Tuesday morning at Barclays Center.
St. Francis Head Coach Glenn Braica has stressed defense and rebounding, and it paid off last year. They led the NEC in scoring defense (66.8) and ranked second in the following categories: field goal percentage defense (.410), three point percentage defense (.333) and blocked shots (5.3). St. Francis finished with a 18-14 record and were 9-7 in NEC conference play.
Braica said of St. Francis entering the season as the target in the NEC, “Doesn’t feel any different because I think the only pressure is the pressure you put on yourself. We put pressure on ourselves every day in practice just to have a good practice, so to me we’re gonna disregard all that stuff. We appreciate the compliment, but it does nothing for us and it’s almost like being up at halftime, doesn’t really matter and we’ll just go from there and try to be as good as we can be, whatever that is.”
St. Francis is led by two dynamic seniors, forward Jalen Cannon and guard Brent Jones. Braica said of them, “They’re two of the more established players in the league and this will be their fourth year playing together and they’ve developed very good chemistry. They’ve also gone through some good times and some tough times and learned how to fight through them. I think we’re blessed to have two guys like that at two different positions with that type of experience and guys that we can rely on. As a coach, you want to have guys you can trust and rely on. I trust these guys.”
Braica has been at St. Francis for five years after being one of Norm Roberts’ assistants at St. John’s. On what makes this team different, Braica said, “One thing about our team this year I think we’ve had pretty good players and we’ve had a lot of them, but here hasn’t been much separation in their ability or in what they have done. This year, there’s a separation because of what some of the guys have already accomplished. If you’re a new guy coming into our program, you can’t look at Jalen Cannon, Brent Jones and not respect what they’ve done and not understand their role on the team and I think that’s something that’s established early on our team this year which we have not had in the past.”
St. Francis forward Jalen Cannon said of being picked to win the conference, “The ranking is just a ranking.” When asked if they wanted to go after the team that was chosen Number 1 in prior years, Cannon said, “Yeah, pretty much, I mean, you gotta go after everybody. The ranking is just a ranking at the end of the day, from the best teams to the worst teams, you just gotta come out and play because this conference is really tight.”
Braica said of weighing the past season’s results against the preseason poll, “There’s a lot of turnover in the league so I think there’s gonna be a lot of good players that no one’s ever heard of yet, but they’re going to establish themselves as the year goes on. That happened to us two years ago. We won twelve league games and we were picked last I think, and then we were picked higher the following year and we finished below that, so you just never know.”
St. Francis has three freshman, Glenn Sanabria, a guard from St. Peter’s in Staten Island; Keon Williams, a forward from John Hardin in Elizabethtown, NJ; and Gunner Olaffson, a guard/forward from Reykjavik, Iceland. On if we might know more about them as the season goes on, Braica said, “I think they all have the potential to be contributors. It’s a big jump from high school to junior college to this level. It’s not necessarily about talent, it’s about just learning different things, the grind and stuff like that. I think whoever catches on quickest and whoever can do it on a daily basis and not give in to anything are going to be the guys who can contribute more. I think they’re all capable of being contributors during the year.”
LIU Brooklyn only has two remaining starters, forward Landon Altenberry, who averaged 10.8 points and 5.6 rebounds per game; and guard Gerrell Martin, who had averages of 12.2 points and 3.5 rebounds per game.
LIU Brooklyn Head Coach Jack Perri said of having to mesh 8 new players with 6 returning players, “It’s enjoyable because they’re a good group and they all get along, certainly off the court and then it’s competitive on the court. That’s really all we’re talking about is just competing. There is no starting five right now, there just isn’t, and I said that from day one, ‘hey, you guys are gonna compete and whoever comes out on top will be the guys that start,’ and then if you’re in the rotation and all that stuff, so it’s really been competitive. We’ve had our share of injuries to this point even this year that have not allowed us to go up an down. We’ve had about eight or nine guys consistently (injured), somebody comes back, somebody gets hurt, so it is what it is, but the guys that are out there are competing, playing hard, and I think we have some talent.”
Nura Zanna is one of those players Perri hopes to have healthy. Zanna is a 6-7 240-pound forward who was McDonald’s All-American nominee in high school, who had to redshirt, or sit out, last season due to injury. Perri said of Zanna, “Nura was a guy who we had kind of penciled in last year as a huge key for us after losing five guys the previous year, that he was gonna play a lot of minutes. He tears a ligament in his wrist and is out for the whole year last year. They did something wrong in his first surgery, so he had to have the surgery over again, and he doesn’t get cleared, after having three surgeries, until the end of April. He comes back, has a good summer, and he finds out he has some kind of defect in his knee, so he was out for another three weeks, so we just have had him back for about a week now. And you can see, he’s a big, strong, physical kid who has great athleticism and is gonna be a good player for us. I’m excited about Nura. He gives us a different dynamic that we didn’t have last year, but that we’ve had in the past, whether it’s Julian Boyd, Jamal Olasewere, he has that kind of athleticism, that kind of ability, so I’m excited about Nura.”
LIU has two new players from Icleand, Elvar Fridriksson from Reykjanesbaer, and Martin Hermannsson from Reykjavik. Perri said of them, “I’m really excited about Elvar. He’s not gonna be a normal freshman. He’s gonna make mistakes, absolutely, but I think he’s a very competitive kid that has some ability to score, as well as get guys some shots. The kid, Martin Hermannsson, was the MVP of the Icelandic Professional League, really talented kid, we got him late. Those two kids are best friends, and it’s kind of helped those two adapt to New York, being together, they’re wonderful kids. Martin, he’s been tremendous, here’s a kid that knows how to play. he just understands where to be on the court, he makes the game look very easy, drive and kick, shoots threes very well, is a competitive kid, he’s gonna play a lot of minutes, I’m really excited about him.”
Recruiting players from Iceland has to be different than recruiting a kid from Albany. Perri said of that, ” You’re right. It was unique, and recruiting, sometimes you get lucky. I knew a guy that was coaching over there, it was his first year and he had mentioned them, and an assistant coach that I’m friendly with, he went out there from James Madison, and he saw the point guard (Elvar Fridriksson), and I called him on it, and I said ‘this guy says something on him, what do you think?’ and he says, ‘oh, yeah, I really like him, maybe not James Madison, he’s a little small because he’s 6-feet, we like our point guards a little bigger, but I’d love to coach him, I’m like ‘okay, good,’ so I get about 12 to 14 DVDs on him, I’m like, ‘wow, he’s like Jason (Brickman), zipping passes crosscourt, making good decisions off ball screens, the way we play, yes! So we bring him out, we work him out while he’s here, and again I’m like ‘okay, this is easy,’ nobody’s really recruiting him, so we took him. His best friend, he ended up having an unbelievable year, and it was us and Winthrop, and he thought New York City was great, and we had a scholarship open up late, and it’s just been tremendous. We were really fortunate and lucky in a lot of respects to get those kids, but that’s what recruiting is, keep digging, keep turning over every rock until you find something that fits.”
By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19 Showcase photo of Marquis Teague by @LolitaLens
It’s been a busy couple of days for the Nets as they finalize their roster for Opening Night in Boston Wednesday night. They traded Marquis Teague to Philadelphia, exercised options on Mason Plumlee and Sergey Karasev, and waived Willie Reed. Here is a further look at the moves:
On Friday afternoon, Nets General Manager Billy King announced that the Nets have traded guard Marquis Teague, along with the 2019 second round draft pick that was obtained from Milwaukee this past June for Coach Klueless Jason Kidd, to the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for guard Casper Ware.
Ware appeared in nine games for Philadelphia last season, and he averaged 5.3 points and 1.1 assists in 12.9 minutes per game.
Teague was acquired from the Chicago Bulls on January 21, 2014 for Tornike Shengalia. He was chosen by the Bulls in the 2012 NBA Draft in the first round (29th overall) out of Kentucky. Teague played in 40 games for the Bulls and the Nets last season, and averaged 2.7 points, 1.0 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 11.1 minutes per game. In 88 career games, Teague holds NBA averages of 2.3 points and 1.4 assists per game.
NETS WAIVE WARE:
On Saturday, the Nets requested waivers on guard Casper Ware, Nets General Manager Billy King announced.
The Nets’ roster now stands at 15 players.
OPTIONS EXERCISED ON PLUMLEE, KARASEV:
The Brooklyn Nets have exercised the third-year contract options on forward/center Mason Plumlee and guard/forward Sergey Karasev, Nets General Manager Billy King announced on Friday. Both players will remain under contract through at least the 2015-16 season.
Plumlee was selected by the Nets with the 22nd pick in the first round of the 2013 NBA Draft out of Duke. He was named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team following his first season with Brooklyn. In 74 games, including 22 starts, last season, Plumlee averaged 7.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 0.79 blocks in 18.2 minutes per game for the Nets. He led all rookies in PER, Win Shares, Win Shares/48 Minutes, True Shooting Percentage, Field Goal Percentage and Dunk Rate and was second among qualifying rookies in blocks per game. This past summer, Plumlee was selected as a member of USA Basketball Men’s National Team and won a gold medal in the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup in September.
Karasev was acquired from the Cleveland Cavaliers in a three-team trade on July 10, 2014 that also brought Jarrett Jack to the Nets. He was selected by Cleveland in the first round with the 19th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. The Russian native averaged 1.7 points and 0.7 rebounds in 7.1 minutes per game in 22 appearances with the Cavaliers last season.
The Nets have requested waivers on forward/center Willie Reed, Nets General Manager Billy King announced on Thursday morning.
Reed was signed to the Nets’ training camp roster on September 25, 2014, and he posted averages of 4.0 points and 4.0 rebounds in two preseason games.
By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19
St. John’s sophomore point guard Rysheed Jordan is once again being prevented from speaking to the media for varying, unclear reasons. Jordan did not speak to the media for his entire freshman season.
It is not certain who is instituting this ban, whether it’s Athletic Director Chris Monasch, Head Coach Steve Lavin, or public relations personnel. One reason given for this is that he is focusing on his academics, which makes no sense because it’s not like players are hitting the books in the locker room after a game. If players are in the interview room for five minutes, that’s a long time. Talking to the media is part of the game, and should be included in the time devoted to the game. It’s ironic that he can’t talk to the media, but playing road games does not interfere with his studies?
It also invites speculation that there is something wrong with Jordan, which is very unfair to him. If they do not feel he has the best command of the English language and it would be embarrassing to the school to have him speak to the media, it shows the fallacy that these are “student athletes,” that he is primarily there to play basketball.
It is in this writer’s opinion that he should be allowed to speak to media, as any other player in college or professional sports is required to do. I cannot think of one instance where a team has made it a point to keep a player from the media.
The Big East Conference should step in and urge St. John’s to end this practice. St. John’s is basically the flagship team of the conference since they play home games at Madison Square Garden, the home of the tournament for 33 years, and it is not a positive thing for them to act this way towards media.
By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19
St. John’s Head Coach Steve Lavin sees how far his three returning seniors, D’Angelo Harrison, Phil Greene IV and Sir’Dominic Pointer have come, and he sees the importance they have put on this season, hoping their time here culminates in an NCAA Tournament berth.
Lavin spoke at Big East Media Day at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday, where it was revealed the Red Storm were chosen third in the conference’s pre-season poll. In addition to Harrison, Greene, and Pointer, Jamal Branch and Khadim Ndiaye are the other two seniors on the roster. St. John’s has made the NIT the past two seasons.
JaKarr Sampson would have been another returning senior, but he left after last season for the NBA. Moe Harkless also entered with this group, but he left after his freshman year and is now entering his third season in the NBA with the Orlando Magic.
Lavin talked about his journey with St. John’s starting in his first year in 2010-11 and what Harrison, Greene, Pointer, Sampson, and Harkless faced when they arrived. “We made the NCAA Tournament, and then the entire team leaves, not one returner. In my experience, that’s unprecedented, as an assistant, as a head coach, as a broadcaster, then return to head coach where there’s not one returning player. So, after one season, keep in mind, not only did they come here on blind faith because they had opportunities to go to schools that were winning on a regular basis, and then when they arrive, they find out I have cancer and they don’t have their head coach in their first year – they win 13 games. In their second year, they come back, but we have no one on the roster with more than one year experience, and they win 17 games. Then, they come back for their junior year and we don’t have anybody on the roster with more than two years experience and they win 20 games.
“Now, you have a group that has 98 games under their belt of Division 1 college basketball experience, if you count the exhibition 102 games, and that makes up our five seniors, which is dramatically different from when they arrived at the program and there was not a player with one game of college experience.
“I think it’s a rather, remarkable unique story, and that’s why expectations are high. We want to see these kids finish in the appropriate manner,” said Lavin.
He continued on his Big 3, “We know, in our objective from the outset was to return St. John’s into a consistent winner but that takes time, there’s no magic wand, there’s no light switch. We went from 13 wins when they were freshmen, 17 wins as sophomores, now 20 as juniors, and now in a position to do something special. I couldn’t be prouder of this group because, not only have they gradually demonstrated an immeasurable progress, but they’re all going to get their degrees in December, a semester ahead of time, in three and a half years and they represent our school, the league and college basketball, in a first-class manner.”
Lavin said of the expectations for Harrison, “D’Angelo is a great story from start to finish at St. John’s, and I couldn’t be prouder of a player that has transformed in so many respects – his maturity, his leadership, he’s gonna graduate a semester ahead of time, in three-and-a-half years, and he’s gonna go down as one of the leading scorers not only in St. John’s history, but in Big East history. And, if I hadn’t suspended him, he probably would have ended up being the leading scorer in the history of our school, but I also believe, and I think he would agree, that the experience of having basketball taken away from him forged a different perspective and has positioned him to now finish his career the way he deserves.”
Rysheed Jordan, their highly-touted point guard from Philadelphia, will be entering his sophomore year. Lavin said of the expectations for Jordan entering this season, “With Rysheed, we want to see him continue to develop and mature into the leader and the point guard that we know he’s capable of being and we saw in stretches last year and we won 10 of 13 Big East games coming down the stretch. In the second half of the season in league, Villanova was 8-1 and we were 7-2, and Rysheed was instrumental in that run of winning 10 of 13 conference games. He received four out of five Big East Rookie of the Week awards. So, there’s no doubt, when Rysheed is playing well, he’s the one that makes this whole team purr, he’s the key, the central nervous system, so to speak, of our team.”
On if it would be a failure if they miss the NCAA Tournament this season, Lavin said, “I don’t even look at it more as a failure. It’s just that we want to be great, we want to be special. We want this group to be able to leave a footprint behind that they can be proud of, to have their own legacy, their own chapter in this storied program, to have an opportunity to make the Tournament and play our best basketball in March so we can be in a position to make a run.”
Lavin spoke of the perception that the Big East is not as strong as it once was, and he said, “I think it’s dangerous, I understand in the media we have to do it, I did it for seven years, where they say the sky is falling for the Big 12 or the Southeastern Conference is really down!, let’s talk about it, and they come up with some statistical information that didn’t give the broader context and so, I think people know the Big East is going to have eight teams vying for NCAA Tournament births and, if five or six of those teams make it, then that’s 50 or 60 percent of your league, and if two or three of those five make it to the second weekend of play, or if someone punches their way to the Final Four, it shows you have a very strong, healthy league.”
Comparing the Big East this season to last year, Lavin said, “I think the biggest difference from last year to this year is the depth of this conference, the quality of depth. If you look at the recruiting, that’s a good indication of the health of the league. When the respective schools are able to address the best players in the country, it means that people are paying attention to the coaching, the tradition, the rivalries, the spotlight that’s on this conference.”
On scheduling old Big East rival Syracuse on their schedule and the non-conference schedule, Lavin said, “It’s a fine line, it’s like, you know, alchemy, tinkering with the test tubes there in terms of finding that right mix of opponents in the non-conference that will challenge your team, create some resistance, but also have some games on your schedule that you know you can win because you have to build your team’s confidence and you’ve got first-year players that need to get their feet wet and develop without being in the pressure cooker every moment they’re on the floor. I think everyone in the conference is striving for a mix of high-level games against power conference opponents, but also not over-scheduling because we sometimes can undermine our own objectives by beating each other up in the league and then having faced such tough opponents in the non-conference, that you find yourself on the wrong side of the fence.
“We are mindful. We’re playing Duke, Syracuse, Gonzaga, Minnesota, Georgia, St. Mary’s, Long Beach, you know, even those mid-major teams will be vying for NCAA Tournament births when you look at our schedule and sometimes those games can turn out to be pivotal in terms of getting into the Tournament or being on the other side of the fence,” said Lavin.
By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19
Marcus Thornton is excited about his role with the Boston Celtics, who acquired him from the Nets in the three-way trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers that brought Jarrett Jack to Brooklyn
The trade went as follows: The Nets acquired Jack, a point guard, and guard/forward Sergey Karasev from the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Nets sent Thornton, a guard, to Boston, and the draft rights to Ilkan Karaman, Christian Drejer and Edin Bavcic to Cleveland. In addition to Thornton, the Celtics received center/forward Tyler Zeller and a first round draft pick from the Cavaliers, and Boston sent a conditional second round pick to Cleveland.
BrooklynFans.com caught up with Thornton after Sunday’s Nets-Celtics game in Brooklyn. Thornton said of how he fits in with the Celtics, “My role on this team is to come in and play hard. come in every minute I’m out there, give it all I’ve got to help my team win.”
On Boston Head Coach Brad Stevens, he said, “Great coach, man. Great coach. He plays to your strengths. Whatever you do well, you know, he plays to it, so you just go out there and do it.”
On his first reaction to becoming a Boston Celtic, he said, “Young team, young team, you know, energetic. We can get out, press the ball, and we can run too. We gho guys like (Rajon) Rondo and AB (Avery Bradley) who have been here and know a lot about the Celtics organization and has helped me along the way.”
On if being a young team, whose oldest player is ex-Net Gerald Wallace at age 32, is an advantage in what is becoming a fast-paced NBA, Thornton said, “It is, it is an advantage, but you’ve got those guys , Rondo and Gerald and they’ve been here (in the NBA) a long time, they’ve been on championship teams and they actually know how to win. To put that (youth) with those guys is a recipe for success.”
This Celtics team is coming in under the radar, something rare considering all the attention during the just concluded Paul Pierce-Kevin Garnett-Ray Allen era. Thornton said of the Celtics being a possible surprise in the Atlantic Division, “I love being underrated because you never know, you can’t see it coming until it hits you, so I like to be that way, it is what it is.”
The Raptors last season had no expectations in the Atlantic, but won the division. On if Boston could do the same, Thornton said, “Toronto shocked the world last year, so why can’t we?”
CELTICS 100 NETS 86 – Preseason finale in Boston
The Celtics beat the Nets 100-86 on Wednesday night in the preseason finale for Brooklyn.
Nets Head Coach Lionel Hollins took no chances in this one, and rested the following players: Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Andrei Kirilenko, Jarrett Jack. Out once again were Kevin Garnett and Markel Brown due to stomach viruses, and Brook Lopez, out with a foot injury.
Hollins started Mason Plumlee once again at center, and he led the Nets for the second straight game, as he had 15 points on 5-for-11 from the field, 11 rebounds, and 2 assists. Cory Jefferson started at power forward and had 11 points on 4-for-12 shooting, and 5 rebounds. Marquis Teague got the start at point guard, and had 10 points (4-6 FG) and 4 assists, but 6 turnovers, in 24 minutes. Alan Anderson was in the lineup at shooting guard, and shot a disappointing 1-for-9 from the field with 5 rebounds and a steal. The starter that really used this as a showcase was Sergey Karasev, who played 43 minutes, and had 6 points (2-11 FG, 1-5 on 3-pt), 5 rebounds, 1 assist, and 2 steals.
Mirza Teletovic had 15 points off the bench, on 5-for-10 from the field overall and 3-for-6 on threes. Point guard Jorge Gutierrez played 24 minutes and had 12 points (4-6 FG, 0-1 on 3-pt), 5 assists, and 3 steals.
For the Celtics, rookie Marcus Smart led the way with 16 points on 5-for-8 from the field and 2-for-5 on threes, 4 assists, 2 steals, and a rebound. Center Jared Sullinger practically had a mirror performance to his outing on Sunday, as he had 15 points (7-for-10 FG, 1-for-4 on pt) and 17 rebounds.
By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19
The Fort Hamilton Tigers have had an up-and-down season, and they missed a chance at a statement win on Saturday, October 18th, when they lost to the Erasmus Hall Dutchman.
Fort Hamilton played some of their best football of the season and held a 22-6 lead with three minutes left in the game. Erasmus rallied, getting a touchdown (although it was not clear the Erasmus runner made it into the end zone) and two-point conversion, recovered an onside kick even though it looked like a Fort Hamilton player had full control of the ball, and a late touchdown and two-point conversion to tie the game at 22. In overtime, they recovered a Fort Hamilton fumble on a snap and followed that up with a touchdown to seal the win and improve to 7-0 on the season. Fort Hamilton fell to 3-4 on the season with three games remaining.
Below is a selection of photos from this entertaining high school game:
By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19
Mason Plumlee had his best performance of the preseason on Monday night at Barclays Center, as he notched a double-double to lead the Nets over the 76ers 99-88. The Nets are now 4-1 in the preseason.
Plumlee had 20 points and 17 rebounds, including 7 on the offensive end, in 30 minutes in his second straight start in place of the injured Brook Lopez.
Nets Head Coach Lionel Hollins said of Plumlee’s night, “This is a league of ups and downs. He had ten rebounds at halftime, he was doing a nice job in the second half, he was getting to the basket and finishing without them fouling. That was the best thing he could do and he wound up just having a big game. And that’s what we need from him every night. That is the expectation for him. Not to get 17 points, not to get 20 rebounds, but to go out and be aggressive.”
Plumlee said of winning back-to-back games after coming back from China, “It feels good to win. I’m still adjusting a little bit getting back. It’s a tough trip to come back from and have a back-to-back, but I thought our guys pleased very well. It was ugly, but we won and we’re going to have to do that sometimes this season.”
The only negative of Plumlee’s night was that he made only 4 out of 12 free throw attempts. Hollins was asked if that could give Plumlee a bad reputation, and he said, “Might get? I think he already has that. It is just part of basketball. I thought we were up seven and he went out there and made two big free throws after the time out. that says a lot about him, he is not afraid to go up there, he is not afraid to get fould. Some guys won’t even touch the ball, some guys won’t even attack the basket
It was a different starting lineup once again for the Nets, as Andrei Kirilenko got his first start of the preseason at power forward in place of Kevin Garnett, who missed his second straight game due to a stomach virus. Rounding out the starting five were Deron Williams and Bojan Bogdanovic as the guards and Joe Johnson at small forward.
With all this shuffling in the Nets’ lineup, Nets Head Coach Lionel Hollins has left Alan Anderson and Jarrett Jack in place as the leaders of the second unit. He said of that before the game, “They are probably going to anchor the bench as we go forward. If everyone stays healthy, they’ll probably come off the bench. Anderson had been sick, whatever he had, and he’s been out, so it’s nice to get him some minutes, get his conditioning up. We’ve got a long ways to go with the second unit, get them up to speed. It’s good to see him back, those guys be able to play together.”
Anderson had 13 points on 4-for-9 from the field and 2-for-4 from behind the arc, with 3 assists and 2 rebounds in 24 minutes. Jack has 8 points (3-7 overall, 0-2 on 3-pts) and 8 assists, including one in which he set up Anderson, to which Nets PA announcer David Diamonte called it “JJ to AA.”
Deron Williams also had 13 points on 4-for-11 from the field and 3-for-4 on three-pointers, with 4 assists and 5 rebounds. Williams said of how he feels and where the team is at, “You know, we’re good. You know, we’re still getting China out of us, still getting back into a rhythm. Missing a couple of guys right now, but I was proud of the way the young guys played, especially at the end of the game. Thought they came in and did a great job. We definitely played better. Missed a lot of shots today, lot of layups, definitely a lot of free throws. And the thing is if we want to win games, we got to do it.”
Hollins said of Williams’ preseason, “The fact that he is healthy has been the highlight. He is a good player, he played well. For me, it’s just the fact that he is healthy, that he is able to move, he is able to push and attack. I am happy for him.”
Philadelphia had five players in double figures, with Henry Sims and Tony Wroten leading the way with 13 points each, Hollis Thompson and Elliot Williams both had 11, and Arnett Moultrie had 10 points off the bench. JaKarr Sampson, who went to St. John’s and left for the NBA after his junior year, was held scoreless on 0-for-4 from the field and 0-for-3 on threes, with 3 rebounds in 15 minutes.
The Nets have their preseason finale on Wednesday night in Boston against the Celtics. Hollins said of what he wants to get out of that game, “Nothing. Just to not be hurt.”
Plumlee said of what he expects from the last preseason game in Boston, “It’s just a dress rehearsal for the opener. We should be playing our basketball, finding our identity and things should be smoother. Throughout the preseason, we’ve played how coaches wanted us to play in different spirits, but we should try to put it all together now going forward.”
Williams said of if he’ll play Wednesday, “You’d have to talk to him,” referring to Hollins.”