BROOKLYN - The Brooklyn Nets took a 2-1 series lead in their first-round playoff matchup over the Toronto Raptors on Friday night, winning 102-98. Joe Johnson scored a team-high 29 points on 11-of-17 shooting, while Deron Williams added 22 points on 7-of-14 shooting in 36 minutes.
Brooklyn will look to take a commanding lead over the Raptors on Sunday night when these teams will get together at the Barclays Center for Game 4. The game will be televised on YES Network and TNT at 7:00 PM.
- The Nets have won their last six playoff series (and are 7-1 all-time) when they've held a 2-1 series lead.
- In seven meetings between the Nets and Raptors this season, the Raptors have outscored the Nets 678-677, though the Nets have won four of seven meetings.
- The team that led at halftime has won six of seven games between the Nets and Raptors this season, including their three playoff games.
- The 29 points Joe Johnson scored mark the most points he has scored in 10 playoff games with the Nets.
- Blatche became the first Nets' reserve since 1985-86 to make 8-plus free throws in a playoff game.
- In three games this series, the Nets have committed 31 turnovers (10.3/game) and the Raptors have committed 59 (19.7/game).
- The Nets held the Raptors to under 35 percent shooting from the three-point line for the third straight game (they shot 7-of-22, 31.8 percent).
Nets vs. Raptors Game 3
Nets vs. Raptors Game 3
Jason Kidd on Deron Williams' and Joe Johnson's performance: "Those two are playing extremely well. They're very aggressive. Joe is causing a lot of problems, looking to double-team and trapping, and when he is called, he is just stepping up. Deron's one of those guys, finding the open guys, he was just aggressive the whole night. Joe's been like this the whole series.
Jason Kidd on Deron Williams missing the late-game free throws: "He's human. It happens."
Jason Kidd on the energy in the building: "I thought it was great. The fans were awesome for 48 minutes and we hope for the same on Sunday."
Jason Kidd on whether or not he's concerned with the way the Raptors made a run with Kevin Garnett on the court: "No. We won the game with him. He gave everything he had, so there's no concern."
Joe Johnson on his success in the post in Game 3: "I was just being patient. Throughout the first half I saw them coming at me with the double-team so I was just trying to make the right play for my teammates and we were rolling early. In the second half, it opened up and I got a couple easy looks.
Joe Johnson on the team's 4th quarter struggles: "Honestly, I think we got a little lackadaisical. I think we were up like 15 with five minutes left, and that's very uncharacteristic of us to blow a lead like that. So (Jason Kidd) will make us look at it and we'll see some things we can improve on and get better at, but that's not us."
Deron Williams on the 4th quarter struggle: "You know, I think again the 4th quarter was our worst defensive quarter...we have the crowd behind us and we got to put our foot on people, and we didn't do that tonight."
Deron Williams on the crowd reacting to his and Garnett's 2nd quarter hustle play: "That's part of playing at home. It happened to us in Toronto. You know, the crowd gets into it after hustle plays, big shots and dunks. We feed off of them, they feed off of us, so I thought our crowd was great tonight and they'll continue to be great.
Shaun Livingston on staying confident after losing 4th quarter lead: "We're confident, but I just think tonight, it was the way that we played, the way that we let them back into the game, that's the frustrating and disappointing part....We killed ourselves, so we just have to be better."
Dwane Casey on the matchup problems Deron Williams and Joe Johnson pose: "One-on-one, that's the difference. We've got to do a better job of making sure we're getting help there quicker. When we do get it there, we're in pretty good shape in those situations so we've got to make sure we recognize where they are on the floor. They're two great one-on-one players and there's no one guy that's going to guard them by themselves so we've got to make sure we get help there."
Dwane Casey on Kyle Lowry's status: "He banged knees, he's got a sore knee and he got knocked on his knee, a knot on his elbow...a busted nose, busted lip, so he's been in a fifteen-round bout, but he's going to be OK."
Patrick Patterson on the Game 3 officiating: "I mean, is that something new? In regards to calls not going our way or us feeling a certain way about referees, it has been taking place all year long. For us to think it is going to change in the playoffs we are fooling ourselves. We have to battle through, we have to fight through and we have to concentrate on ourselves rather than things we cannot control as far as the referees, Brooklyn or even the fans."
DeMar DeRozan on Joe Johnson causing matchup issues: "He's a big body, it's tough once he gets you down there and gets his hips on you. He's a very crafty little baller; his floater, you really can't do much to it. Once he gets six, seven feet in there, we've just got to be quicker on the double teams to get the ball out of his hands.
*Notes courtesy of Brooklyn Nets PR staff.