By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor - @JESchott19
The Brooklyn Nets’ 109-97 loss to the Detroit Pistons on Sunday afternoon at Barclays Center was the Nets’ eighth loss in nine games and dropped their record to 3-10. It is shocking that a team predicted to win between 50 and 60 games has lost their 10th before Thanksgiving. If you asked people before the season when they would hit their 10th loss, the answer probably would have been “some time in January.”
Kevin Garnett did not mince words in the postgame when he said, “I think everybody in here is embarrassed. You definitely don’t want that at home. Like I’ve been saying, we’re going to continue to work to try to change this as best we can.”
The Nets led 51-41 with 39 seconds left in the second quarter. A Greg Monroe three-point play cut the Nets’ lead to seven heading into the break.
It was as if that started the second half because the Pistons picked up where Monroe left off, and Detroit outscored the Nets 34-15 in the third.
Detroit shot 67 percent from the field, making 12 of 18 shots, and it seemed like everything went in. The Nets made just five baskets in the third, and shot an anemic 26 percent. The Nets also made an astonishing eight turnovers in the third quarter, a number some teams don’t reach in an entire game.
The Nets entered the fourth down 12, at 78-66, and Coach Jason Kidd started the fourth with a lineup not exactly built for a comeback: Mason Plumlee, Alan Anderson, Tyshawn Taylor, Tornike Shengalia, and Mirza Teletovic.
They essentially traded baskets with Detroit for the first six minutes, and finally made some headway when Joe Johnson got hot and buried a three-pointer to pull the Nets within eight, at 96-88 with 4:46 to go.
He then brought Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in with 4:02 to go, and the Nets got to within five (96-91) on a Johnson three with 3:19 left. Rodney Stuckey followed with a bank shot and Greg Monroe dunked one to give Detroit a nine-point edge.
The Nets responded with perhaps their saddest possession of the game, as Shaun Livingston missed a layup, and Garnett missed the put-back right next to the hoop. That sucked the life out of the Barclays Center and, before you knew it, the Nets were down 14 with 35 seconds left.
The irony is that the Nets outscored Detroit 82-75 in the other three quarters of the game.
Garnett tried to give a reason for the Nets’ futility to start the second half in his postgame comments. “Jason (Kidd) just questioned us in the locker room, but it’s something we’re obviously going to have to address. We’ve got to be the worst team in the league when it comes to third quarters, just unacceptable. As players, we have to be accountable, including myself, and come out and do whatever it is that we got to do and apply it,” said Garnett, who has been a shadow of his old self for most of the season.
The Nets are still without two starters, point guard Deron Williams and center Brook Lopez, who are both nursing ankle injuries. On the team’s expectations of being better despite the injuries, KG said, “Absolutely. No disrespect to Brook or Deron. They’re impact players, obviously, and we need them. But they’re out right now. We’ve somehow got to bind together and hold this fort down, everybody. It’s not going down to one or two guys. It’s going to come down to a group effort.”‘