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No Brook Lopez or Thaddeus Young leads to no win against Pelicans

William Hauser-USA TODAY Sports

In a battle between two depleted teams playing for pride, the Pelicans came out on top 106-87. The Pelicans were playing without eight players who are out for the season due to various injuries, but that didn't stop them from showing up and getting a win.

The Nets are now 21-56 on the season and have lost five games in a row. Thomas Robinson had his fourth straight double-double grabbing 11 points and 14 rebounds. Sean Kilpatrick had 15 points for the Nets off the bench as well.

Before the game, Brooklyn announced that they're shutting down Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young for the remainder of the season. The reasoning was that it doesn''t make sense to risk injury to the team's biggest assets at this point in the season, where playing for wins or losses isn't going to yield long-term results.  It also gives the other Nets frontcourt players like Willie Reed, Chris McCullough, Henry Sims and Thomas Robinson a chance to prove themselves.

"(GM Sean Marks) called me before the Orlando game (Tuesday) and we talked about it, and he felt it was for the best," said Lopez. "That day, I think two people had gotten injured playing in meaningless games finishing up the season, so he just wanted to take a precautionary angle going forward.

"I completely understand the situation and I understand what he’s going for, but it’s tough for me to not be on the floor."

The first half was as sloppy of a half as you can find. Brooklyn trailed by 11 points and the absence of Lopez and Young was felt early and often. Brooklyn narrowed the lead to as little as four in the second half, but New Orleans was too much to handle on this afternoon behind a great total team effort.  They ran wild, putting up 29 fastbreak points to the Nets' four.

Luke Babbitt had a great game with 21 points going a very efficient 3-of-5 from three-point range. Also for New Orleans, D-League call-up Tim Frazier had 19 points and 13 assists with a very impressive plus-minus ratio of +30.

These last five games are going to be difficult to watch for Nets fans. The only positive is that the younger players will get minutes and a chance to prove themselves.

As Lopez noted, "I wish we were more successful as a team, obviously...It takes time to figure things out, but I felt like we could’ve figured things out quicker.  I think our young guys learned a lot this season and we found a lot of tools we can use going forward, definitely."

Brooklyn's next game is on Wednesday against the Wizards. This nightmare of a season is almost ever.