Early Monday after the Brooklyn Nets held practice following a disappointing loss to the Denver Nuggets, Kenny Atkinson offered updates on the status of DeMarre Carroll and Quincy Acy ... and what happened to his team in general.
Carroll, who’s been an everyday starter for Brooklyn, and Acy, who’s keep a consistent role player off the bench, missed Sunday’s loss with nagging injuries. Carroll has sustained a right ankle sprain while Acy strained his left groin, both in the Knicks game last week.
“DeMarre’s questionable, we’ll check him out at shootaround tomorrow, and Quincy will be out (tomorrow), but after that it’s just day-to-day. We’ll see what he looks like day-to-day,” said Atkinson regarding the players’ status ahead of the Tuesday’s Halloween home contest against the Phoenix Suns. It’s the game at Barclays prior to the near two-week west coast road trip that begins Friday night vs. the Lakers and Brook Lopez.
Carroll discussed his ankle injury, which he believes he injured at Madison Square Garden.
“I think I did it on the Knicks game,” he said. “I kind of came down on somebody’s foot. I didn’t think nothing of it. I woke up the next morning and it was a little sore. I’ll know at shoot around (if I’m playing Tuesday). I’ll go through everything and see how I feel and take it from there.”
The injury provided Carroll an opportunity to see how the Nets looked from afar, and he offered some observations on Monday.
“I felt like we came out in the first half and did what we’re supposed to do and play Nets basketball,” said Carroll. “In the second half we came out kind of lackadaisical thinking they were going to lay down but the NBA is a hard league, it’s hard to win in this league. You can’t take halves for granted. Even games for granted. Hopefully we learn and get better from it.”
From the time Sean Marks executed the deal for Carroll (as well as Toronto’s 2018 first round pick and a second), the 6’8” veteran forward has been referred to as one of the leaders on the Brooklyn squad whose median age is 25. That’s six years younger than Carroll.
Without Carroll, who’s putting up 14.2 points and 6.3 rebounds per contest so far maybe the Nets got complacent?
“Yeah, sometimes you need somebody that’s been through it,” Carroll said, regarding leadership importance. “Sometimes you need that verbal leadership. At the end of the day, if I’m out, if I’m in, guys still have to step up, some guys have stepped up, they’ve got to grow quickly. We’ve got to hold everybody accountable.”
So if Carroll is there, expect Allen Crabbe in the sixth man role and Joe Harris filling in for Acy. That would be a big help.