In the midst of their lengthiest losing streak of the season, the Brooklyn Nets knew entering their game against the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night that there are no such things as must win games in December but this one contest was as close to that as it possibly could be.
The Nets responded with a hard-fought 94-88 victory in the Air Canada Centre to snap their losing streak at five games and improve their overall season record to 12-9.
Brooklyn found themselves down by a score of 27-20 at the end of one quarter and 45-37 at halftime however the Nets ripped off a 31-point third quarter which was driven by a Deron Williams pep talk in order to turn the tides in this one. The Nets also won the extremely important fourth quarter battle as well 26-24 to enable them to pull out the six point total victory.
This could be just the kind of victory that the Nets need in order to right the ship even though it came against a team that figures to be amongst the bottom dwellers in the Eastern Conference. It is the type of game that shows the team no matter what adversity they may be facing they can overcome it if they stick together and fight through until the end.
Swingman Joe Johnson was one of the driving factors in the Brooklyn victory as 19 of his team-high 23 points came in the second half as the veteran also shot 7-14 from the field and a very accurate 4-6 from behind the three-point line. Big man Andre Blatche continued his fine play in Brook Lopez‘s absence scoring 14 points grabbing nine rebounds and even dishing out three assists as he continues his season of resurgence.
Brooklyn’s Bench Mob also had their hand prints all over this one also as C.J. Watson scored 16 points and grabbed six rebounds in just 24 minutes of action while shooting a perfect 4-4 from downtown and 4-4 from the charity stripe. Kris Humphries also chipped in with 11 points in just 18 minutes of action as he attempts to adjust to his new role coming off of the bench.
Now Brooklyn just needs to ensure that another five game losing streak doesn’t occur if they want to remain in the hunt for one of the top spots in the Eastern Conference come playoff time. Their previous longest losing streak was just two games which happened twice this season and if the team can stick to those types of losing streaks instead of the one which they just recently snapped then good things should continue to happen in the County of Kings.
The Nets now improve to 5-4 away from the Barclays Center and will hope to have Lopez back in the lineup in the next few games. Up next for the Nets are the Detroit Pistons on Friday night at the Barclays and then a trip to the United Center on Saturday for a match up with the Chicago Bulls.