Tuesday night brought the first win – even if it’s only preseason and worth as much as Monopoly money in a real world diner – for the ultra-hyped 2013-14 Brooklyn Nets, 111-106 over the Washington Wizards in overtime.
But despite the absence of standings implications, a set of very bad ingredients still found a way to creep into the batter that eventually became a victory for this revamped Brooklyn bunch.
Clearly it isn’t going to be a walk in the Brooklyn Bridge Park for new head coach Jason Kidd as many predicted, even with the endless talent he’s got at his disposal. Luckily for him, a chance to correct, or keep an eye on, these issues before the games that count is exactly why these preseason games are played.
Believe it or not, the main concern taken from the contest should be a veteran no one, especially Kidd, thought they would have to worry about – Joe Johnson. Johnson’s biggest impact in only 12 minutes of play came through two assists, which was an even lower number than his foul total, which was three. Worse yet, Johnson shot 0-of-4 from the field.
Inefficiency from a veteran like Johnson in a preseason game would normally be nothing to bat an eye over. But given that it occurred in the first game that he played with other scorers in Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, it’s something to watch out for in the next game. This isn’t something the Nets want to see become a habit.
Turnovers were another super weak point for the Nets on Tuesday. Sure, Deron Williams was absent due to his nagging injury, but that’s no excuse to gift-wrap the ball to Washington 24 times.
Finally there was the horrendous display of three-point shooting. Brooklyn made just six of 21 attempts from beyond the arc. Whether it was the shot selection or just execution, that type of percentage is awful and has to change.
These are the things the Nets need to clean up in Saturday night’s matchup with the Detroit Pistons.