By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor – @JESchott19
The Washington Wizards, one of the hottest teams in the NBA, beat the Nets 89-74, as the Nets had one of their coldest nights on the offensive end this season.
The Nets have lost five of eight and are now 29-21. The Nets won 13 of the first 15 games after P.J. Carlesimo was named the head coach. That gave the team a huge lift in Jnauary, and that appears to have faded, as the Nets are falling back into bad habits on both ends of the floor.
Their offense has become stagnant once again, and they had tremendous difficulty scoring. The Nets shot 32.9 percent from the field, making 25 of 76 shots attempts.
The Nets and Wizards traded baskets early, and Washington led 21-20 at the end of the first quarter.
The Wizards took over in the second quarter, as many teams have against the Nets lately. Nets Head Coach P.J. Carlesimo said of it in the postgame, “Second quarter was terrible, as a team and individually.”
Washington, led by Kevin Seraphin, John Wall, and Nene with four points each, opened the second with a 16-1 run over the first seven minutes. The lone Nets point in that run was a Brook Lopez free throw.
The second unit of Kris Humphries, C.J. Watson, Keith Bogans, and Andray Blatche were on the floor for the majority of the second. Carlesimo said of the bench,”We maybe have to look at the makeup of the second group and shake it up.”
When it was over, Washington outscored the Nets 30-11 and led 51-31 at halftime.
The Nets couldn’t make any headway in the third quarter, and were down 62-39 halfway through the third quarter.
Over the next five minutes, the Nets played their best basketball of the game, going on a 14-0 run, with Deron Williams scoring eight points in the stretch.
A.J. Price hit a three-pointer for Washington to give them a 12-point lead at 65-53 entering the fourth.
That gave them a spark, and quickly, the Wizards were back up 16 halfway through the fourth.
Trevor Ariza had seven points in the fourth quarter, and Nene dominated Brook Lopez with a couple of layups and solid defense.
Deron Williams led the Nets with 20 points on 7-for-20 shooting, with 6 rebounds and 5 assists. Joe Johnson had 14 points on 6-for-12 shooting with just 3 rebounds and 2 assists.
Joe Johnson said of the game, “Just didn’t have that continutity. They made a run, we couldn’t bounce back… The effort was great to start the game, during their second quarter, don’t know what happened. Give them credit. They’ve played great, they showed it in the second, and we never bounced back.”