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FINAL: 120-119

NBA: Detroit Pistons at Brooklyn Nets Nicole Sweet-USA TODAY Sports

BROOKLYN, N.Y. — “Thank god for Spencer Dinwiddie. Saved me. Saved everybody.” Jared Dudley said with a huge grin after the game. And he was right. The Nets owe The Deity, big time.

Dinwiddie won the game in three ways. He tied the game in regulation with a three from nearly 30 feet, hit the winning three from the corner, and then denied Blake Griffin’s attempt to win it. It’s been a while since Brooklyn has seen a one-man show like Wednesday night at Barclays Center.

Also, Dinwiddie did it against the team that drafted him and then gave up on him, just as he did last season. He will not let the Pistons forget. He has what Rob “World Wide Wob” Lopez calls a “scorched earth vendetta.”

Dinwiddie (sorta) denied it was personal.

“I mean at this point, nah,” Dinwiddie said. “Players have changed, coaching staff has changed. I was able to hit a couple of shots and help our team win.”

But Andre Drummond, his former teammate, isn’t so sure, offering his own succinct analysis: “That man has a personal vendetta every time we play him. He’s trying to let us have it every time we play. Any time he sees the Detroit Pistons, he comes after us.”

The game was more than just personal revenge for past sins by Pistons management. With the Nets facing a four-game losing streak and the Rockets next on the schedule, the organization needed this win and in short order, the 25-year-old gave them what the team needed, finishing with 25 points off the bench, all but three in the second half. Of those, 17 came in the fourth quarter and overtime, 10 points in the 14-7 run over the final three minutes of regulation that saved the game.

Here are the details...

Dinwiddie first became a hero with just 20 seconds left in regulation, hitting the game-tying shot. After Rondae Hollis-Jefferson stopped Reggie Jackson from winning it, the game went into overtime. Back and forth they went until the Clutch Master put it away.

The Nets trailed by two with the clock winding down. Blake Griffin hit a clutch shot in the lane and it looked like another typical Nets game to put the Pistons up, but on the ensuing possession, Dinwiddie hit a step-back three in the corner to put the Nets up by one with seven seconds left.

As if that wasn’t enough, the Pistons went to Griffin on the next possession, but Dinwiddie contested well and the shot missed. Game over. And so, the Nets won a thriller, 120-119, Wednesday night at Barclays to improve to 3-5.

Getting to that point wasn’t easy. It looked like a typical Nets game. They started losing control in the second quarter following a 21-3 extended run for Detroit — giving them a 38-26 advantage in the second quarter. They kept their head barely above water, but didn’t re-gain the lead until there was 1:31 left in the game.

Enter Dinwiddie, who drained a huge three and made the assist on an and-one foul to Jarrett Allen, giving the Nets a 107-105 lead. Griffin came down on the other end and hit a three-pointer to give Detroit a one-point lead with less than a minute remaining. The Nets then proceeded to miss four three-pointers and again, things looked bad.

But Dinwiddie took control. He had the ball moving and the crowd on its feet as he brought steadiness to the offense, then won it all. He looked like he owned Barclays Center and he did. As Dinwiddie walked off the court a hero again, Nets fans chanted “Broooo-kkklynnn” for the first time in a long time, blistering eardrums all the way to the exit doors and down into the subway.

Here’s video of the two shots, back to back.

Post game, Dinwiddie put his big shot(s) in simple terms.

“It’s like the Kermit thing where you got ‘Hoodie Kermit’ telling you like ‘nah shoot the step back three’ so I was like, alright cool, let’s do it.”

As for his stop on Griffin, Dinwiddie pointed to his added strength this season.

“He tried to back me down. I lift. So credit [director of sports science] Dan Meehan on that,” said Dinwiddie.

“When I step on the floor every night, in between those lines for the 20, 30 or 48 minutes, I [have to think] I’m the best player on the floor. I carry that with me. That’s the type of chip on my shoulder I have, the mentality I have. Then when I step off, I’m just me. But that’s the approach you have to have. So when I shot the shot, I didn’t think anything else except I was going to make it.”

Or as Kenny Atkinson said, “What can I say about Spencer? Phenomenal.”

He was not alone of course. Caris LeVert finished with 19 points, while Joe Harris stayed consistent with a season-high 23 points on 4-of-7 shooting from deep and Steady Eddie, Ed Davis, had his second double-double of the season with 10 and 10. It was also Davis’ fourth game of 10 rebounds or more. Allen was limited due to foul trouble — and eventually fouled out — but still managed to finish with 14 points and nine rebounds in 21 minutes.

D’Angelo Russell sat at game’s end as Atkinson went with the hot hand. He finished with six points (on 3-of-15 shooting), six assists, two steals and a block.

The Nets shot 43 percent from the field and dished out 26 assists to 16 turnovers.

Meanwhile, Griffin led all scorers with 25 points and nine rebounds in 42 minutes, while Andre Drummond put home an effortless 24 points and 23 rebounds.

There aren’t many “must-win” games in the first 10 games of the season, but the Nets needed this one not only with Houston arriving on Friday but with Philly in Sunday.


Per Nets PR, Ed Davis’ 9th rebound of the game is his 3,000th career rebound off the bench. He’s one of just seven players since 1983-84 to grab 3,000+ boards off the bench. He joins: Detlef Schrempf Thurl Bailey Nick Collison Chris Andersen Chris Gatling Dennis Rodman.



Jet Blue and the Brooklyn Nets teamed up and made a “BK Blue” plane — a custom designed Nets plane with shades of Brooklyn at the bottom of the plane. They’ll unveil the plane and city edition jerseys on Thursday at JFK Airport.

For a different perspective, head on over, if you dare, to Detroit Bad Boys, our sister site on SB Nation.