clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Nets finish preseason with 116-111 loss to Knicks

NBA: Preseason-New York Knicks at Brooklyn Nets Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

After cutting four players late last week, the Nets approached Thursday’s preseason finale similar to how they’ll approach the regular season. Shorter rotations, altered offensive and defensive sequences.

They played better, especially behind a big offensive performance from Jeremy Lin, but yet again they struggled in the second half and lost, 116-111. They’ll head into the regular season with a 1-5 preseason record.

The Nets played well early in this game, finding a 10-point lead and especially forcing the ball down low to Brook Lopez in the first quarter. It worked. Despite 13-first half turnovers, the Nets controlled most of the first half.

And then, there were the third quarter woes ... again. The Nets surrendered 32 points and trailed by nine heading into the fourth. It’s been a common theme that their defense struggles mightily after the break.

Carmelo Anthony torched them all night with 21 points on 8-of-18 shooting. He, along with Courtney Lee (15 points) anchored the Knicks’ run.

Still, the Nets didn’t give up. They cut the deficit down to six behind Jeremy Lin’s (24 points, 10 assists and 8 turnovers), along with Joe Harris, who nailed three three-pointers in as many attempts and chipped in 15 points. He’s 10-of-16 from deep in the preseason. Play the man!

Despite the turnovers, Lin played his best preseason game. Here are the highlights.

The 61 points in the second half, however, did the Nets in. The third quarter was the killer, but coming up with stops down the stretch was the difference maker. Down eight with under three minutes left, Willy Hernangomez put home an easy layup to go up by 10, which appeared to be the dagger, but the Nets cut it down to three with a deep corner three from Harris and had possession with 20 seconds left.

On the following possession, Yogi Ferrell, who had just been inserted, turned the ball over and the Knicks sealed the deal with a fastbreak dunk.

Once again, the Nets took 30+ 3-pointers, hitting 14-on-35 attempts, 40 percent. They committed 23 turnovers in which the Knicks turned into 35 points. To the Nets credit, they forced 24 turnovers, but New York shot close to 49 percent and scored 52 points in the paint.

The Nets’ defense, worst in the NBA this preseason, is becoming a concern.

“It’s definitely a cause for concern,’’ Lin told The Post. “You never ever want to be even close toward the bottom in defense if you want to legitimately win in this league.”

Brook Lopez, who had another uncomfortable game in the motion offense, talked about getting used to the offense.

"It is definitely something I am not used to,” said the Nets center who finished with 12 points on 4-of-11 shooting. “This preseason has been a great advantage and tool and have been scrimmaging in practice as well so it is something I have been seeing every day now so I am definitely getting more and more comfortable with it.

"I think it is just getting used to the personal difference and finding that balance like I have been mentioning a lot. Just knowing obviously Jeremy is very strong in the pick-and-roll and a lot of guys fit best in a motion --dribble, drive, kick it out-- system and finding a balance in those three things with those two in the post-ups."

“I think we’ve made progress,” Kenny Atkinson said of the preseason. “And that’s going to be our message all year, progress, development, improment.”

Next up: The regular season! October 26 at Boston.