Mikal Bridges’ 44 factors not sufficient as Nets lose to lowly Magic
ORLANDO, Fla. — Perhaps the Nets had been drained. Or perhaps they couldn’t hit a jumper.
Or perhaps the previous led to the latter. The top outcome was the identical, a desultory 119-106 loss to sorry the Magic on Sunday at Amway Middle.
Mikal Bridges poured in 44 factors, only one shy of his career-high set in opposition to Miami on Feb. 15, however the Nets shot simply 40.7 p.c as a crew, and eight of 35 from deep as they gave him no assist.
The Nets (40-35) have misplaced six of seven and fell again right into a flat-footed tie with Miami of their bid for the sixth and last assured playoff berth within the Jap Convention, forward by solely the head-to-head tiebreaker. Additionally they stumbled two full video games behind the fifth-place Knicks.
The Nets not solely couldn’t construct on the momentum of Saturday’s big victory in Miami — once they beat the Warmth to climb out of the precarious play-in — however apparently couldn’t get better from it. On a fast turnaround on this back-to-back, they obtained completely outplayed by a lowly Magic crew they’d overwhelmed Nov. 28.
“Completely completely different crew than we noticed in November at our place,” coach Jacque Vaughn had warned. “With the addition of Markelle Fultz, simply their numbers total as a crew is fairly spectacular.
“Wins that they’ve been capable of garner, the size they’ve, the power to show folks over, the power to drive the basketball from a number of positions will give us some issues. Nice check for us to let [Saturday] evening go. Recognize what we did, however accomplish this aim of getting a win [Sunday].”
Brooklyn didn’t seem to have a psychological hangover from its big win over the Warmth one evening earlier. The Nets’ woes appeared extra bodily, tipping off simply 22 hours after their recreation in Miami had and sporting down because the evening went on.
“That is an fascinating one. The late evening in Miami then to show round [at] 6 p.m. Very considerate in how we’re going to make use of our rotation. We’ll be good about utilizing everyone to attempt to get by means of this recreation,” stated Vaughn, who performed with out Royce O’Neale, Ed Sumner, Seth Curry and Ben Simmons.
“Ed mainly was our backup level guard for Spencer, so we’ll want one other ball-handler on the market, in order that piece of it. Then it takes it to a different stage if Royce can’t play. Then which may lengthen [the rotation] much more.”
Orlando put eight gamers in double figures, led by Cole Anthony’s 21.
Brooklyn had simply three in double figures, Cam Thomas (18 factors) and Cam Johnson (10 factors) the one assist for Bridges.
The Nets lead 38-37 on an alley oop by Day’Ron Sharpe halfway by means of the second quarter. But it surely was the final lead they might maintain.
The Nets allowed an 11-2 run and by no means recovered.
Rookie Paolo Banchero’s layup off a Franz Wagner feed capped the run and left Brooklyn in an eight-point gap with 4 minutes left within the half.
The deficit was 60-51 at intermission, and 92-74 after three quarters on an Anthony floater.
Orlando went into the fourth quarter with seven — sure, seven — scorers in double figures. Brooklyn had a grand whole of 1, Bridges left frolicked to dry with little to no assist offensively. The deficit reached 20 within the last interval.
Brooklyn is 0-9 when Bridges fails to achieve 25 factors, and entering into Orlando coach Jamahl Mosley had referred to as slowing him the important thing to victory.
“Cease him from scoring 25 factors. It’s going to be by committee,” Mosley stated. “He’s finished such a fantastic job for them clearly for the reason that commerce, his capacity to get straightforward fast baskets, making 3s at a pleasant clip after which his capacity to get to the free-throw line; he’s finished a fantastic job with that and with the ability to bow up and get fouls. He simply is aware of methods to play the sport.”