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Dinwiddie drops career-high 39 points, lifts Nets past Sixers, 127-124

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Brooklyn Nets v Washington Wizards Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images

It’s Spencer Dinwiddie’s world. We’re just living in it.

A career night from Spencer Dinwiddie (and another from rookie Rodions Kurucs) gave the Brooklyn Nets a three-game win-streak — just their fourth such streak since 2016-2017.

Dinwiddie scored 39 points on 11-of-18 shooting off the bench and propelled the Nets (11-18) to a 127-124 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers (19-10), Wednesday night. Jimmy Butler (groin) sat out in this one.

Here’s some data on just how big that number is...

Or take a look at Dinwiddie’s video highlights...

t was the second time in the streak the Nets have beaten a top-3 seed in the East, the first win of this mini streak coming against the Toronto Raptors.

Joel Embiid had 23 points and 13 rebounds at the half. but the Nets led by one point. Then, something clicked at half, and Dinwiddie went wild.

He scored 15 points in the third quarter, including seven straight points in the midst of a 19-6 run. The Nets scored 37 points in the quarter and led by 10 entering the fourth. It’s been a tall task for these Nets to close out games this season, but these past three games have been different.

They’ve had somebody to control the tempo and that somebody has been Dinwiddie. Following a 25-point night against the Knicks, Dinwiddie finished with a career-high 37 points on 11-of-18 shooting in 30 minutes. He passed Brook Lopez (2014-15), Derrick Coleman (1991-92) and James Bailey (1986-87) for most points off the bench for a Net since 1981-1982.

The Sixers didn’t go down easy, though.

They brought it within six at 111-105. Ed Davis hit two free throws and the Nets led by eight. Then, on the ensuing possession, Dinwiddie laid home a bucket, notching his career-high while giving the Nets a 10-point lead.

... Still wasn’t the dagger.

The Nets went up 11 with 54 seconds left after two more free throws by Dinwiddie, but the Sixers went on a 9-2 run over the span of 38 seconds and trimmed the deficit down to four with 16 seconds remaining. Dinwiddie hit more two free throws, but Joe Harris fouled Landry Shamet from beyond the perimeter. He missed 2-of-3, but Amir Johnson grabbed the offensive board and brought the Sixers within three.

With zero timeouts left, the Nets just barely got the ball inbounds and Jared Dudley ran out the clock.

Kurucs was a huge difference maker for the Nets. He finished with 13 points and three steals in 19 minutes off the bench. In fact, the Nets out-scored Philly’s bench 70-31. Included in that bench mob was Ed Davis. He actually played more time than Jarrett Allen due to Allen’s inability to defend Joel Embiid.

“We love Jarrett Allen, but he was having a hard time [with Embiid],” Kenny Atkinson said after the game.

Despite the adjustment, Embiid still had a huge night with 33 points and 17 rebounds, but turned the ball over six times. Ben Simmons finished with a near double double with 22 points, eight rebounds and seven assists.

The Nets hit 14 three-pointers on 28 attempts — led by Allen Crabbe (4-of-8), Dinwiddie (4-of-6) and Joe Harris (2-of-4). They also took 43 free throw attempts compared to Philadelphia’s 16.

The Nets inched their way closer to the eighth seed, standing 2.5 back from the Orlando Magic (12-15).

... Take THAT for data!

TRACKING THE 8TH SEED

It really is something something else when you’re a mini win streak away from the playoffs and a mini losing streak away from the 15th seed. That’s where the Nets currently stood entering Wednesday.

They are now two games back of the Orlando Magic for the eighth seed and four and a half games ahead of the 15th seed. We’re going to monitor this in recaps going forward.

GAMES TO KEEP AN EYE ON: Celtics-Wizards (Wednesday), Jazz-Heat (Wednesday), Magic-Bulls (Thursday).

THAT’S JOEY BUCKETS TO YOU

Ah, yes. The occasional appreciation for Joe “Buckets” Harris. This time it’s in a piece from HoopsHype’s Bryan Kalbrosky where he explains how Harris is “currently among the most accurate shooters in the NBA because of his ability to score off screens.”

Only two players in the NBA (Golden State’s Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry) have scored more points per game shooting off screens. Harris is currently averaging 4.1 points per game on this play type, which is more than seven different NBA teams so far this season.

“I like to watch guys who move without the ball really well like Klay or JJ Redick or Kyle Korver,” Harris explained to HoopsHype. “Good shooters are often good shooters because they’re aggressive at hunting and seeking shots. The best shooters in the league are constantly moving without the ball.”

Watch Harris and only Harris for a couple possessions. There’s so much more to his game than just hitting open three’s, as Kalbrosky explains in this piece. His work off the ball is an art.

The craziest part? He’s third on the team for three-pointers made.

DINWIDDIE’S KICKS - HOMAGE TO DR. J!

For a different perspective, head on over to Liberty Ballers, our Sixers sister site on SB Nation.

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The Nets will face the Washington Wizards at home on Friday, 7:30 pm.