By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor – @JESchott19
On a night the Nets rested their starters, the reserves made a statement by pulling out a win against the Wizards on Monday night at Barclays Center, 106-101.
Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Brook Lopez, Reggie Evans were all rested, so the starting lineup consisted of Gerald Wallace, Kris Humphries, Andray Blatche, MarShon Brooks, and C.J. Watson.
It was a rough start for the Nets, as Washington opened up a 30-15 lead nine minutes in, and led 34-21 at the end of the first quarter.
The Nets got back into it in a highly entertaining second quarter, as Tornike Shengelia had an electrifying dunk and Mirza Teletovic had six points. The Nets trailed just 56-50 at halftime.
It stayed close until the fourth quarter, where Teletovic, Shengelia, Tyshawn Taylor, and newcomer Kris Joseph played the entire 12 minutes.
Teletovic drained a three-pointer to pull the Nets to within 89-87 with 7:15 left. Taylor hit a three a minute later to make it 92-91 Washington. A little later, Joseph got a steal and was fouled, so he hit the two free throws (his first points as a Net) to make it 94-93 Wizards. The Nets took a 95-94 lead on a Shenglaia driving layup with 4:57 left.
The game was tied at 101 with a minute left when Blatche cleaned up a Taylor missed lay-up by floating up a shot two feet in front of the hoop. It went in, and Blatche was fouled as well, but he missed the free throw, so it stayed 103-101 Brooklyn.
Tyshawn Taylor sealed the win by draining a three from the top of the key to make it 106-101 with 22 seconds left. Taylor ran back down the court to his excited Nets teammates, led by Deron Williams, in front of the bench.
Kris Humphries and Andray Blatche led the Nets with 20 points each. Five other Nets scored in the double figures, as Tyshawn Taylor and Mirza Teletovic had 14 each, MarShon Brooks had 12, and C.J. Watson and Tornike Shengelia had 11 points each.
Nets Head Coach P.J. Carlesimo said of Humphries, “We need Hump. We’re not going to be successful in the playoffs unless we get the Kris Humphries that we know and if he can give us the defense, the offense and the boards, the whole thing. It was a big step for him. The more time we can get him in, the more sccess he has, the better it’s going to be.”
Shengelia had a big game, as he had his first career double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds, which was a career high. He said of the opportunity he was given, “I was prepared to play and every time I get the opportunity, I give it 100 percent.” On the crowd support they received as the game went on, “It was great to have our crowd behind us. They are one of the toughest crowds in the NBA.”
Carlesimo said of the contributions of Shengelia and Taylor, “Toko (Shengelia) competes. The first thing you can say is about how hard he plays. He plays so hard. He makes things happen defensively. Tyshawn, as he showed, he runs the pick-and-roll so well. He’s got a good rhythm. You can’t teach the way he runs pick-and-rolls. he really played well. He’s been spending a lot of time with Doug (Overton, Nets assistant coach) shooting threes and he made a couple that helped us, but he made the biggest one as well.”