Brooklyn Nets’ early season woes have disappeared beneath new head coach Jacque Vaughn, who has led the group to the quantity two seed within the Japanese Convention and a 10-game successful streak – their longest since 2006. We take a look at what’s behind their latest run of fine kind.
Nets’ supercharged assault
You do not win 10 video games on the trot with out an absurd scoring fee, and the Nets have been doing precisely that.
They’ve picked up an offensive ranking of 123.4 and are connecting with excessive effectivity on taking pictures across the court docket, because of the efforts of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.
Each have been embroiled in controversy this season however proved their value on the court docket, making them ultimate picks in our 2022/23 MVP predictions.
Happily, they don’t seem to be the one parts of this Nets assault which can be lastly clicking. Enter stage-right: Ben Simmons.
The person that was booed off every week, laughed at by Philadelphia 76ers followers, and has spent extra time injured than taking part in within the early phases of the season is lastly delivering precisely what he promised the franchise.
Not solely has Simmons been a vital massive man on rebounds and rim assaults, he is additionally been pivotal on the defence. His disruptive and prickly nature off-court has been a useful gizmo on it. Simmons is averaging 7.4 rebounds and 6.4 assists, permitting each Irving and Durant to flourish.
Royce O’Neal and Nic Claxton have completed their fair proportion of chipping in, and therein lies the success of the Nets – sharing the spoils simply in addition to figuring out when to go up the plaudits as they climb the East Convention standings.
One of the best duo within the league?
Jayson Tatum and Jalen Brown might need one thing to say about that.
However there isn’t any debate that Durant and Irving have undoubtedly entered the dialog. The Boston boys had an extended reign of supremacy, however they’re now not contesting the title alone.
Certainly, Durant and Irving are averaging a mixed 59.7 factors a recreation, constantly and relentlessly scoring from throughout the paint, from threes, outdoors the paint. You get the purpose.
The place the pair may be slacking on factors, they make up for in ruthless taking pictures effectivity, connecting on 51 per cent from the sphere (1st within the NBA) and 39.1 per cent from the three-point line (1st within the NBA).
The place in earlier seasons one or the opposite has struggled with profiting from their probabilities, this hasn’t been the case for both on this spectacular 10-game streak.
Now working because the quantity two seed within the Japanese Convention, you’ll be able to count on these abilities to stage up as we strategy the February All-Star conflict and playoffs.
Masters of the clutch
The Nets have overpowered defences throughout the league, however their greatest trait could also be snatching victories within the dying moments of video games.
Grasp of the clutch, Vaughn’s group have had six of their 10 wins determined by six factors or much less, with seven of their wins coming within the last minutes of the sport.
Primarily, this has come from the contributions of Durant, and extra so Irving, who leads fourth-quarter scoring with 9.1 factors (this has jumped to 12 on this 10-game spell).
Irving’s tenacity, and silky ballhandling makes him extremely slippery to mark and comprise, and as such, he has been capable of squeeze himself into lanes and gaps to pile on the late scoring.
This was none extra so evident than in Wednesday evening’s win over the Atlanta Hawks, because the Nets held on for a 108-107 win within the last possession of the sport.
Although they dominated the early quarters, they did depart it late, and maybe that ought to function a warning level for a group who doesn’t want to go away it so to win video games, not with the form of expertise they possess.
The Nets subsequent face the fading 9-26 Charlotte Hornets on January 1, the place they may look to increase their streak to 11.