The Long Island Nets topped the Minnesota Timberwolves affiliate, the Iowa Wolves, 122-111, at Nassau Coliseum Sunday to win their ninth straight game and remain undefeated since All-Star Break. The Nets nine game win streak ties Windy City’s nine game win streak for the longest G League win streak this season.
With the win, Long Island’s magic number to win the NBA G League Atlantic Division is three games. Long Island is currently 30-14 and ranks first in the Eastern Conference. The team had five more regular season games, including three home games at the Coliseum. The G League Playoffs will begin on March 26.
The win was noteworthy for another reason, as our G League sister site on SB Nation points out...
Counting their win today against the Iowa Wolves, the @LongIslandNets have had four straight games where they've had six or more players score 10+ points.— Ridiculous Upside (@RidicUpside) March 10, 2019
Brooklyn’s two-way guard, Theo Pinson, paved the way for the Nets in his return scoring 26 points, grabbing seven rebounds, and handed out four assists in 31 minutes. Pinson had been assigned to the big club the last few games.
Tahjere McCall, just off his 10-day with Brooklyn, had another great game for Long Island recording 21 points, eight rebounds, and one assist on 9-of-14 shooting.
Alan Williams, the Nets two-way center, proved reliable as always with yet another double-double, 27th of the season, with 19 points and 11 rebounds.
Mitch Creek and Dzanan Musa played good all-around games in the win. Both played great defense and drove the ball with aggression yet precision. Musa and Creek recorded 17 points a piece with Musa recording a double-double putting up an additional 13 rebounds.
Long Island shot 45-of-93 (48 percent) in the win from the field and 11-of-24 (46 percent) from behind the arc. The Nets were not too good from the free throw line going 21-of-34 (62 percent) which is shocking compared to their last couple of games.
Musa was 5-of-10, Creek 1-of-4, and Kamari Murphy 0-of-4.
For Iowa, Jaylen Johnson had a good outing for the Wolves scoring 20 points to go along with eight rebounds and two assists. Brandon Goodwin played good scoring 20 points as well to go along with his seven rebounds and seven assists coming close to a triple-double.
Hakim Warrick, best known for his 2003 NCAA title run with Carmelo Anthony and Syracuse, scored 12 points to go with three rebounds and three assists in the loss. At 36, Warrick is the oldest player in the league.
Iowa shot 44-of-107 (41 percent) from the field and 13-of-35 (35 percent) from behind the arc. The Wolves weren’t much better from the line, going 10-of-15 (67 percent) from the foul line.
With Pinson back in the lineup, Will Weaver started him along with Creek, Williams, McLaughlin, and Musa.
Both team started to put points on the board within the opening minute of the game from inside the arc. Long Island came out strong in the opening minutes of the first going on a 6-to-0 scoring run growing their lead to eight points. The Nets held their lead throughout the first quarter but the Wolves did not go easy. The Nets played strong offense and defense in the first.
Pinson had a strong first quarter performance going 4-of-4 from the field dropping 11 points to go along with two rebounds and two assists. Williams had a good first quarter as well recording four points and three rebounds. Creek recorded eight points, two assists, and one rebounds.
For Iowa, Johnson was the team-high scorer with 11 points going 3-of-3 from behind the arc. Warrick, the NBA veteran, recorded six points for the Wolves in the opening quarter.
At the end of the first, Long Island led Iowa 36-28.
Iowa started the second on a 12-to-4 run tying the game up at 40 with 8:23 left in the half. The Wolves focused their offense around driving the ball and keeping their shots inside the arc. The Wolves started to extend their lead going on another scoring run, this time a 12-to-6 run. After an and-one by McCall, he was called for a technical foul for taunting.
Musa started to heat up in the final minutes of the seconds. The Nets 29th overall pick drove the ball with confidence at Warrick, who is nearly double Musa’s age and hit a contested three the following possession. Again, on the next possession, Musa hit another three to bring the Nets within three with two minutes left in the half. The Nets finished the half on a good note and led by two points.
Williams had a good second quarter scoring six points totaling 10 points and six rebounds heading into the locker room. Pinson had a quiet offensive quarter scoring only three points but ended the half leading Long Island in scoring with 13 points.
Musa, who played good basketball in the second half of the second quarter, recorded 12 points, six rebounds, and one assist. Creek continued his strong play on both ends of the floor scoring 10 points, two assists, and one rebound in 16 minutes of play.
For the Wolves, Johnson and Johnson-Odom scored 15 points a piece leading their team in scoring. Warrick continued his strong play going 4-of-6 from the field scoring 10 points, three rebounds, and one assist in 16 minutes of play.
Long Island shot 27-of-50 from the field while Iowa shot 25-of-55. The Nets controlled rebounding in the first half grabbing 28 rebounds while the Wolves had 18. Both teams shot the three-ball at a good level in the first half. The Nets shot 7-of-13 (54%) while the Wolves shot 10-of-19 (53%). The Nets did struggle at the foul line, which is quite rare compared to their previous games, going 6-of-12 while the Wolves were perfect going 5-of-5.
At half, the Nets led the Wolves 67-65.
Creek came out of the locker room aggressively, forcing himself to the foul line off aggressive drives keeping the Nets lead alive. Williams, Creek, Pinson, and Pinson all got themselves to the foul line in the opening three minutes of the game.
With 6:57 left in the third, the Wolves called a timeout with a 80-76 lead over the Nets. Midway through the third, Big Sauce recorded his 17th double-double of the season grabbing his 10th rebound but picked up his fourth foul on the following play.
The pace really picked up in the second half of the third quarter. The Nets ended the fast paced quarter on a 4-to-0 scoring run. The Nets had six players in double-figures.
Pinson led the Nets in scoring heading into the fourth with 18 points to go along with six rebounds and four assists.
Williams recorded a double-double midway through the third entering the fourth quarter with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Creek had 14 points as well followed by Musa with 14 points.
McCall had a good third quarter recording 15 points, four rebounds, and one assist heading into the final 12 minutes.
At the end of three, the Nets led 94-89.
The Nets finished the game playing an aggressive brand of offense and their defense locked down the Wolves. With the win, the Nets have tied Windy City for the longest win streak in the G League this season (nine games).
Long Island looks to extend their winning streak to 10 games when they take on the Erie Bayhawks Wednesday, March 13.