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Long Island Nets fall to Maine Celtics, 111-99, in final game before Vegas Showcase

Long Island Nets v Maine Celtics Photo by China Wong/NBAE via Getty Images

The Long Island Nets were beaten by the Maine Celtics on Friday night, 111-99, just one night after Brooklyn’s G League were able to beat the Boston’s affiliate team themselves. The 1-1 mini series puts Long Island at 4-8 to conclude pre-showcase play.

The Nets will now travel directly to Las Vegas where they will participate in the NBA G League Showcase, the league’s “premier in-season NBA scouting opportunity,” which includes the expanded NBA G League Showcase Cup Tournament, a single-elimination tournament where eight teams will compete for the Showcase Cup Championship.

A few hours before tip-off, the Long Island Nets that head coach Adam Caporn will miss Friday night’s game in Maine and the upcoming NBA G League Winter Showcase for undisclosed personal reasons. Assistant coach James Maye has assumed head coaching duties for those three Long Island games.

On Friday night, Maine got out to a 19-2 run out of the gates, forcing Long Island to play from behind immediately. The Nets were able to successfully cut into the lead in the second half of the first period, whittling their deficit down to 12 points.

Long Island halved their points difference in the second quarter thanks to a flurry of three pointers and trailed 56-62 at halftime.

The Nets were able to ride their momentum into the third period, getting as close as two points, but the Celtics maintained their advantage and led by six points entering the final period of play.

Much like the beginning of play in the first quarter, Maine exploded to open the fourth quarter, good for 13-0 that extended the Celtics’ lead to 19. After a timeout, Nets responded with 9-0 of their own. But it was too little, too late as the Celtics controlled with 15 point lead with 3 minutes to go, and the Nets found themselves trailing all evening in a wire-to-wire loss.

Bryce Brown led the way for Long Island with 26 points on 8-of-16 shooting, as well as 6-of-12 from behind the arc. Brown, a former Maine Celtic, scored 16 points in the first matchup against Maine on Thursday.

Craig Randall ll added 20 points for the Nets along with 5 assists and 5 rebounds. Randall has inserted himself into the starting lineup as of late.

Maine was led by 5’9” guard Chris Clemons on Friday evening, who posted a statline of 26 points, 11 rebounds and 7 assists in 39 minutes, all team-highs for the Celtics.

Here are the game highlights:

The Nets will now travel to Las Vegas for their next two games as part of the annual NBA G League showcase. In their first of their two Showcase matchups, Nets will face the Santa Cruz Warriors — the G League affiliate team of the Golden State Warriors — on Monday, Dec 20th, at 3:00pm EST. The game will air on ESPNU.