They're getting close, but not close enough. The Brooklyn Nets played another close game and like most night, couldn’t get over the hump at the end. They lost to the Miami Heat for the third straight time this season and are now a league worst 9-45. The home losing streak is up to 14 and the overall losing streak is at 12.
The opponent tonight will be the Memphis Grizzlies. Although things are a bit different under new head coach David Fitzdale, they're still a scrappy team that plays hard every night and will be a tough out come playoff time. They had won three straight games, but the Golden State Warriors beat them in Memphis on Friday night.
Where to follow the game
YES Network on TV. WFAN 101.9 FM on radio. Tip off after 7:30.
Jeremy Lin is out. So is Quincy Acy.
Chandler Parsons was given last game off to rest, but he should be good to go tonight.
In line with the rest of the league, Memphis has made more of an attempt to be proficient in shooting three pointers. Memphis is taking seven more three pointers a game this a year as compared to last year and are shooting a respectable 35.6 percent from deep. As Parsons rounds back into shape, the Grizz will remain competitive and keep up with their peers in the West.
Speaking of taking more three pointers, Marc Gasol has been able to successfully expand his range. Before this season, he had taken 66 three pointers in his career. This season, he’s already taken 193 and is shooting an impressive 39.9 percent on those attempts. Big Spain is still a marvelous passer and solid low post scorer and having the three pointer in his arsenal makes him a better player and Memphis’ attack more versatile. The matchup between Gasol and Brook Lopez will be a fun one. Like Gasol, Lopez has broadened his game to include three pointers. His efficiency isn’t where Gasol’s is, but he makes up for it by taking more shots from deep. The Nets still have to work to increase his productivity deep into games, and tonight would be the perfect time to start getting it right.
We'll get to see an old friend tonight. Vince Carter isn’t the kind of player he was with the Raptors and Nets, but he’s still helpful coming off the bench. I came across this article from Brad Callas over at The Cauldron, and this section in particular stood out to me:
It’s hard to define the legacy of someone like Carter. Despite his early reputation as a malcontent, he now sports one of the finest reputations in the game, a consummate professional. It’s also not unfair to wonder whether Carter was something of a victim of circumstance, playing in an era which saw three of the top 12 players ever in Kobe, Duncan, and Shaq; two of the top-30 in Garnett and Nowitzki; and three of the top 50 in Iverson, Kidd, and Nash. It’s no shame not being better than that dozen, but it’s not entirely fair to diminish just how good and, for a short time, anyway, how dominant a player he was.
Vince has had a pretty fascinating career and as it winds down, I think we’ll be more appreciative of his contributions to the NBA.
Player to watch: Mike Conley
Say hello to one of the most underrated players in the league. The point guard position is stacked with talent and while Conley doesn’t have the flash of Russell Westbrook or Stephen Curry, he’s a hell of a PG in his own right. Coach Fitzdale has given him more control of the offense and Conley has responded with the best season of his career. Conley is shooting a career best 41.3 percent from three point range and is getting to the free throw line more often. Conley is one of the better pick and roll guards in the league and when Memphis reaches the playoffs, that will come in handy. He does a lot of things well and that, along with his toughness, will make Memphis a difficult opponent in the playoffs.
We’ll continue to see the PG split between Isaiah Whitehead and Spencer Dinwiddie. We still don’t have a clear cut leader in the battle for starting point guard, but with Lin progressing from injury, it may not matter much. In the meantime, they’ll work to keep their turnovers down and help find good shots for the Nets offense.
From the Vault
The Nets will be honoring Brazilian legend and Pro Basketball Hall of Famer Oscar Schmidt this evening. With that in mind, check out his Hall of Fame speech from 2013
and his game against Team USA in in the 1987 Pan Am games.
More reading: Grizzly Bear Blues
- Brooklyn Nets Game Notes - Brooklyn Nets
- Memphis Grizzlies Game Notes - Memphis Grizzlies
- Preview: Grizzlies vs. Nets - Yahoo! Sports
- Conley, Grizzlies look to get back on track vs. Nets - STATS LLC
- Trevor Booker is the epitome of the kind of player Nets want - Zach Braziller - New York Post
- Nets hope for a home win before they head out on long road trip - Brian Heyman - Newsday
- Grizzlies look to rebound vs. Nets - Ron Tillery - Memphis Commercial Appeal
- LUIS SCOLA READY TO CELEBRATE OSCAR SCHMIDT - NBA.com