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Nets wrap up home schedule vs Bulls

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NBA: Chicago Bulls at Memphis Grizzlies Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Party’s almost over. The Brooklyn Nets took a trip into Chicago on Saturday night hoping to put a nice win together in their final days of the season. They were able to do that and then some by coming away with a 28-point victory. They’re playing the Bulls again so we can just fast forward to the rest of the preview.

The Nets will be looking for their third straight win. They are 0-6 in previous attempts. So there’s that.

Where to follow the game

YES Network on TV. WFAN 101.9 FM on radio. Tip off after 7:30.

Injuries

Caris LeVert (right foot tendinitis) is doubtful while DeMarre Carroll (left hip strain) and Isaiah Whitehead (right wrist surgery) are out. It appears we may have seen Carroll for the last time this season. He was held out of the Bulls game in Chicago and now Monday as well. No need to risk further injury. If this is it, Carroll turned out to be a lot more than a “salary dump.” He had his best year as a pro, averaging career highs in points, rebounds, assists and blocks. His 73 games played tied a career high.

Robin Lopez, Zach Lavine, Kris Dunn, and Lauri Markannen were out in Chicago. No word on their status yet for Monday night, but this is a critical game for Draft Lottery position. Another loss and the Bulls will be tied with the Kings for sixth worst record. Tank on.

The game

The Nets won game one in January and game two on Saturday.

It’s Fan Appreciation Night at Barclays, so the Nets should be doing something nice for the home fans that come out to the game. There will be giveaways of team swag, appearances by Kenny Anderson and Kerry Kittles and a half-court shot by a season ticket holder to get better seats. We’re rooting for you, Dennis.

While Zach Lavine is out, he did make a bit of news recently. He is set to be a free agent this summer and is in line for a nice sized payday. He spoke to NBC Sports Chicago’s Vincent Goodwill about being a max level player in salary and game:

The last home game of the year is the perfect time for D’Angelo Russell to put on a show. As DLo goes, so go the Nets and he’ll have the advantage going up against Jerian Grant and Cameron Payne. The main goal this week is for Russell to make it out in one piece, but a few show stopping highlights along the way will make the folks feel good. You heard it here first.

Player to watch: Bobby Portis

If you had asked me at the beginning of the season, I thought Portis would’ve been traded to another team by now. He had beaten up Nikola Mirotic and with the Bulls going nowhere, he seemed like a likely bet to be somewhere else. However, it was Mirotic who got traded (to New Orleans) and Portis who remained in the Chi. He’s been a lot more involved in the offense than usual and hasn’t taken much away on that side of the ball.

He’s also a bit salty after losing by 28 points on Saturday, so look for him to ratchet up the intensity. “Personally, I can’t wait to play. You know, them laughing and things like that. You can go out there and joke around, have some fun, but we need to do some things they did to beat us and be the tougher team.”

Quincy Acy is coming off the best game in his professional life. He scored a career-high 21 points and also made a career-high six three pointers. He should see a fair amount of time on the court again this evening. Might as well see if lightning strikes twice, right?

The Nets meanwhile have quietly made quite a jump in three-point shooting. They are fifth in the league in 3-point percentage since the All-Star Break, rising from 28th overall to 18th for the season. They are also second in the league in field goal attempts and makes for the season.

From the Vault

Saturday was the 20th anniversary of Goodie Mob’s “Still Standing.” So with that in mind, let’s revisit one of my favorite tracks from that album.

Mofere reading: Blog a Bull