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Nets look to grab a win before hitting the road

"I gotta play when football's on? Shaking my head."
"I gotta play when football's on? Shaking my head."
David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

That went well. After losing to the Timberwolves on Wednesday, the Nets bounced back and beat up on the New York Knicks by a not-so-close final score of 110-99. This is the last game of a four game homestand, and once it's over, the Nets will head west for a three game trip.

Coming into the Barclays Center for the Sunday matinee will be the upstart Orlando Magic. The Magic are off to a slow start but got their first win of the season against Minnesota at home on Friday night. This is the first of a three game road trip that will take them to Toronto on Tuesday and back to New York to play the Knicks on Wednesday night.

Where to follow the game

On television, you can catch this game on the YES Network. On the radio, with the Giants in Seattle to play the Seahawks, WFAN will be airing that game (side note: You can catch up on that game with coverage from our sister sites Big Blue View and Field Gulls). WCBS 880 AM will be carrying Nets-Magic. Tip-off is at 3:30.


There are no injuries to report for Brooklyn.

For Orlando, second year man Victor Oladipo has yet to appear this season due to a facial fracture. The earliest he can return is December. Kyle O'Quinn sat out Friday's game due to an ankle injury and did not travel to Brooklyn.

The game

The matchup between Brook Lopez and Nikola Vucevic should be interesting. Lopez had a pretty great game against the Knicks (with one exception) and will help anchor Brooklyn's inside attack. Vucevic leads in total rebounds and is looking to build on a good 2013-2014 season that was short circuited by injury. The Nets still aren't great on the glass, but they are much improved on the glass. Kevin Garnett only played 13 minutes on Friday, but he should see more time in this contest and he'll definitely look to keep Vucevic off the glass.

When Brooklyn's offense is clicking, they'll get a lot of good looks from three point range. On Friday, Brooklyn made 14 of their 24 three point attempts. Leading the charge was Joe Johnson. Johnson has been one of the league's best players thus far, averaging 21 points while making 50 percent of his field goals and 48 percent of his three pointers. Johnson has also made a point of helping out more on the glass, and is averaging a career best six rebounds a game. Tobias Harris will draw the initial matchup on Johnson, but Joe should be able to exploit that matchup throughout Sunday afternoon's game.

One of the new pieces Orlando added was Channing Frye. Frye came over from the Phoenix Suns via free agency but hasn't gotten off to the best of starts. When his game is on, he provides lots of floor spacing with his three point shooting. He and Garnett have an interesting history so there's a good chance it gets mentioned at some point during the broadcast. Mirza Teletovic is a carbon copy of Frye to some extent, being able to stretch the defense with his three point shooting and grab a bunch of rebounds as well.

This was news to me, but Ben Gordon is still in the league. Even more surprising to me is the fact that he is playing close to 22 minutes a night. A lot of that is due to Oladipo being out, and you figure that once he returns, Gordon's minutes will decrease.

Player to watch: Elfrid Payton

With Jameer Nelson off to Dallas, Payton is the team's point guard for the future. He was drafted tenth in the last Draft and is part of a nucleus in Orlando that has earned praise from national writers.

He's going to have his hands full dealing with Deron Williams. Deron has been looking more and more like the player Nets fans and management thought they were getting all those years ago. Amar'e Stoudemire had this to say following Friday's game:

I’ve been him playing against him for a long time, and that’s the D-Will I remember from when I was out west.

Deron has been bullying opposing point guards, and he hopes to do the same with the rookie Payton. Williams has 30 pounds on Payton and should look to post him up as much as possible. When Payton has the ball, the Nets should look to play off of him and dare him to shoot jumpers all game. Payton has only taken ten shots outside of 14 feet and no three point attempts. He's still able to contribute with his passing, and for a young guard that has had to deal with elite point guards like John Wall and Kyle Lowry in the first two weeks of his professional career, he deserves time to establish himself.

From the Vault

We're about six weeks away from Christmas. With that in mind, let's head on back to 1993 and see if the Shaquille O'Neal led Magic could make a statement against Scottie Pippen and the Chicago Bulls.

More reading: Orlando Pinstriped Post