Mirza Teletovic had 10 points in the second quarter to give the Nets the lead at halftime, and they went on to win 113-106 over the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday night in Brooklyn. This is their seventh straight win, and they have run their record to 23-15.
Toronto, led by Amir Johnson, opened up a 46-41 lead on an Ed Davis jump shot. The Nets’ Brook Lopez got a couple of free throws and a jumper to make it 46-45, followed by a DeMar DeRozan jumper to make it 48-45 Toronto with 1:59 left in the second quarter.
That was when Teletovic, nicknamed MTV, turned it on, and hit back-to-back three-pointers to give the Nets a 51-48 lead. His ability to get open on the three-point line makes him quite a weapon.
On the Nets’ next possession, he drove the lane and was fouled. He made one of two free throws to make it 52-48, and they led 54-50 at halftime.
Where the Nets struggled, the third quarter, they now pull away. They had a 66-65 lead with 5:22 left in the third, and Deron Williams and Joe Johnson started a run by hitting a couple of three-pointers.
Lopez got to the line and hit a couple of free throws, then Keith Bogans hit a three to make it an 11-3 Brooklyn run and open up a 77-68 lead.
The Nets’ starters delivered tonight. Brook Lopez had 22 points, 8 of which came in the third quarter, on 6-for-12 shooting. He was a perfect 10-for-10 from the free throw line, and had 9 rebounds, just missing a double-double for the second straight night. Deron Williams and Joe Johnson each had 21 points, wtih Williams shooting 6-for-13 with 7 assists, and Johnson 9-for-18 with 5 assists.
Keith Bogans was in the starting lineup for the injured Gerald Wallace. He had 7 points and 3 assists in 27 minutes.
Bogans brings a different dimension to the offense in that he’s a forward that plays like a guard, and that allows Johnson to move closer to the lane and play like a small forward.
The Nets are 1 1/2 games behind the Knicks, who are idle until their game in London on Thursday against Detroit. If the Nets win tomorrow in Atlanta, the Knicks lose their game, and the Nets win Friday at home vs. Atlanta, the Nets will have tied the Knicks. That will make for a dramatic scene next Monday at Madison Square Garden.
POSTGAME VIDEO WITH HEAD COACH P.J. CARLESIMO, BOGANS, AND TELETOVIC: