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That's more like it! Nets get revenge on Celtics with 111-101 victory in Brooklyn

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David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

It was just two nights ago the Boston Celtics embarrassed the Nets by 25 points.

It was just two nights ago Boston fans chanted, "Thank you Brooklyn!" aiming their message at Nets brass for trading them an unprotected first-round pick next year.

It was just two nights ago that everything seemed to be at an all-time low after losing to the division rivals that own the Nets potential lottery draft pick.

But fortunately for the Nets, the horrific day was neatly masked by a solid bounce-back victory over the Celtics, 111-101, Sunday night at Barclays.

The beauty of playing a home-and-home in the NBA.

Flip teams and nights and you have a very similar story to Friday night in Boston. The Celtics won that game in the second quarter after scoring 43 points.

The Nets took legitimate control of the game in the second quarter after scoring 35 points on 14-of-21 shooting from the field.

They gained a 17-point lead by the end of the half following the lead of Andrea Bargnani and Shane Larkin off the bench. Joe Johnson got hot at the right time and nailed three three-pointers to give the Nets their largest lead of the night.

But the Celtics didn't give up and the Nets are notorious for their third quarters this season.

They out-scored the Nets 36-27 in the third quarter and cut a 22-point deficit down to eight by the start of the fourth. It was then a 27-8 run the carried over into the fourth quarter and brought the deficit all the way down to four with eight minutes left.

Not again. Not after Friday.

The Celtics made a push, but failed to come up with stops when they needed them most. They trailed by six with under two minutes left, but Jarrett Jack nailed two shots to put Brooklyn up 10 with a minute and change remaining. Another big shot(s) from Jack, who finished with 22 points on the night.

The Nets shot 52 percent from the field and 5-of-15 from three. They were 5-of-8 at the half.

The Nets were sparked by the active play from Rondae Hollis-Jefferson in the first quarter. Hollis-Jefferson is at the top of the board for steals per games amongst rookies (1.3), and Sunday he grabbed a career-high four steals in the first quarter and capped off the scrappy quarter with a swat and then an exuberant alley-oop slam. He filled the scorers sheet with nine points, six rebounds, four assists, five steals and one blocked shot. He was limited late in the game due to foul trouble.

Hollis-Jefferson's five steals helped the Nets force 17 turnovers from Boston.

As for his rejection of David Lee, Hollis-Jefferson said: "I don’t know. It was just like relaxing my muscles and jumping and I flew. I felt it. I’m like, ‘Wow! I’m high!’ Inside, that was a big thing for me because I like blocking shots, so I was like, ‘Yeah!’"

The Nets also out-rebounded the Celtics, 49-35, and finished with a 16-point advantage inside the paint.

Brook Lopez led all Nets with 23 points and 10 rebounds in 34 minutes. Joe Johnson chipped in 17 on 5-of-10 shooting and Thaddeus Young finished with a double-double of 11 points and 12 rebounds. The Nets record serves as a poor indication for how good the front-court duo has been.

For Boston, both Avery Bradley and Isaiah Thomas were lights out with 27 apiece.

Nets bench

The Nets second unit looked pretty good tonight. Andrea Bargnani stuck to his hot potato method of playing, but tonight it worked out as he finished with 12 points on 6-of-9 shooting. Shane Larkin used his lightning fast speed to create opportunities for his teammates, while consistently staying active with his hands on the defensive side. Bojan Bogdanovic's struggles continued, however, after a 1-for-6 shooting night in this one. He simply does not look comfortable when he has the ball. Confidence issues?

The Nets will face the Oklahoma City Thunder on the eve of Thanksgiving at 8:00PM.

For more on the Boston Celtics, check them out at CelticsBlog.