Which NBA team has yet to reach double digit wins this season? Which NBA team is the worst in the Eastern and Western Conference, has only two road wins and hasn’t had any semblance of a winning streak all season?
There doesn’t seem to be a light at the end of the tunnel for the Brooklyn Nets. Not even a match or night light. It’s dark down there.
Brooklyn, who last night played their metropolitan area rivals, the New York Knicks, another Eastern Conference team with woes and losing streaks of their own, continues to struggle in the win column in the NBA standings.
They’re nearing 42. That’s half of the regular season, with three months still to go. Their weakness is the third and fourth quarter of games where they struggle. Compounded by the exhaustion from travel and scheduling, a problem shared throughout the NBA, Brooklyn has been outscored most times, and in a variety of ways.
They’re weak defensively. They’re not getting stops. Teams are getting to the rim, breaking them down. There’s no containment of the opposition.
Offensively, Brooklyn isn’t executing. There are turnovers, missed shots, a lack of clutch shooting. Their last six losses are an example of what ails them.
Against the Miami Heat Monday, their second meeting of the Heat in five days, the final game of the Nets’ three-game road trip, Brooklyn was outplayed from the second quarter on.
In Minnesota Saturday, against the Timberwolves, Game 2 of their three-game excursion, Brooklyn lost every quarter.
Though they blew out the Cleveland Cavaliers 43-30 in the fourth quarter, the Nets’ deficits in the first three were enough to secure a home win for Cleveland, the defending champions.
Shockingly, Miami came from 18 points down in the fourth last Wednesday at Barclays to beat the Nets by three, 109-106.
Though Brooklyn played competitively in the first quarter, the San Antonio Spurs came into Barclays with Kawhi Leonard and Tony Parker on the bench, blowing out the Nets, 112-86.
The Charlotte Hornets outscored Brooklyn by 14 points in the first and in the third quarter, beating them in Charlotte, 112-105, beginning their six-game slide.
There are seven more games on Brooklyn’s schedule before the all-star break. Each will be tough, and a test of their resolve. The Indiana Pacers at home tomorrow (Friday), then the Toronto Raptors at noon on Super Bowl Sunday before a back to back Tuesday and Wednesday. First in Charlotte, again, led by Kemba Walker (from the Bronx), then back here against the Washington Wizards. Team captain, center Brook Lopez, shoulders his responsibility to this team. “As the leader, I’ve got to do a better job of keeping us in our flow, in the offense,” he noted.