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Nets end 8-game skid, match win total from last season with 104-87 victory over Bulls

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... And Jarrett Allen woke all of Brooklyn up

BROOKLYN, N.Y. — On Drazen Petrovic Night, the Brooklyn Nets finally snapped an eight-game losing skid with a 104-87 victory over Chicago Bulls. The Nets had lost 12 of 13 entering Monday with the skid lasting as long as four weeks to the day. It was also their first win in February now 26 days old.

With a five-game road-trip coming up, they needed this one in the worst way. And to add one into the improvement category, they matched their win total from last season with 20 wins and 21 games left.

It looked like it might be Brooklyn’s best opening to a game this season after giving up just 19 points in the first quarter – the second lowest they’ve allowed in an opening quarter this season. Down 14-13, they went on an 11-0 run and took a double-digit lead.

However, the Bulls outscored the Nets 32-21 in the second quarter and wiped out all momentum from the first quarter. They led 51-49 at half, but the Nets turned it around in the third quarter.

They rallied behind Jarrett Allen, who posterized Lauri Markkanen early in the third. It was in the midst of a 12-2 run and 35-19 advantage in the third, which gave them a 14-point lead entering the fourth. The 14-point lead was Brooklyn’s biggest through three quarters since December 29 at Miami. They never let up from that point on.

This was the play that brought the house down:

It was a solid team effort with great ball movement, led by the three-headed monster of Allen Crabbe, Jarrett Allen, and DeMarre Carroll.

Crabbe finished the night with 21 points on 4-of-9 shooting from deep. It was his fourth game in the last six in which he’s scored 20 or more points. He’s averaging 20.3 points and shooting 40 percent from 3-point during that span. This is finally the guy the Nets offered $75 million over four years and then traded for.

Allen, who had potentially the highlight of the season for Brooklyn, finished with 18 points, nine rebounds and three blocked shots on 8-of-11 shooting in 23 minutes.

And of course, Carroll was the Swiss Army Knife with 18 points, six rebounds and five assists. Off the bench, Joe Harris did his usual thing with 15 points and seven rebounds. And while D’Angelo Russell and Spencer Dinwiddie scored only 11 points between them, they combined for 17 assists ... and only three turnovers.

The three ball was a point of emphasis right from the start. The Nets took 15 in the first quarter (!) and hit 16-of-42 on the night. They also assisted on 31 of 40 made baskets.

The defense was also stellar against the tank and held Chicago to 36 percent shooting.

RHJ, LEVERT RETURN

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson has missed the last 11 games with a right groin strain and Caris LeVert has been out the past five games with a right knee sprain. The Nets went 1-10 in RHJ’s absence, 0-5 in LeVert’s absence.

They were on a minutes restriction on Monday. RHJ scored seven points in 22 minutes and LeVert scored six in 21 minutes.

HONORING NO. 3: DRAZEN PETROVIC

The Brooklyn Nets honored Drazen Petrovic, who played for the team for three years and ranks ninth in franchise history for points per game at 19.5. He was in the top-15 in scoring during the 1992-1993 season.

Drazen lifted New Jersey to its first playoff appearance in five seasons.

The summer after the best season of his career, Petrovic was killed in a car crash. He was 28 years old. This upcoming June will officially mark 25 years since he passed. He was most influential in the United States and Europe.

The Nets celebrated his legacy.

The Nets will celebrate Dražen Petrović's legacy on Feb. 26th vs. the Bulls

A post shared by Brooklyn Nets (@brooklynnets) on

They handed out 10,000 of these...

And the setup on the main concourse...

His impact will not be forgotten, especially for those who played basketball in Europe. Just ask Kenny Atkinson.

“I was huge fan. I’m a Europhile, too – I thought that was really cool to prove how guys from over there can, not only be good players, but really make a mark in this league,” said Atkinson.

For a different perspective, head on over to Blog-a-Bull.

***

The Nets will begin the five-game road-trip against Cleveland, Tuesday.