Harden, Griffin help Nets hold off Pistons 113-111
Brooklyn Nets forward Blake Griffin (2) is defended by Detroit Pistons forward Sekou Doumbouya during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, March 26, 2021, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)DETROIT – James Harden scored 44 points and Blake Griffin added 17 in his return to Detroit, lifting the Brooklyn Nets to a 113-111 victory over the Pistons on Friday night. Brooklyn was still without Kevin Durant (left hamstring strain) and Kyrie Irving (personal reasons), but the Nets had enough to hold off the last-place Pistons. Griffin spent three-plus years with the Pistons, but he reached a buyout agreement with Detroit earlier this month and went to the contending Nets. The Pistons went 34 for 47 on free throws.
USA Basketball picks 57 players for men's Tokyo Games pool
USA Basketball is a step closer to choosing the team that will play in this summer’s rescheduled Tokyo Olympics, releasing the names Thursday of 57 players who are part of the pool to fill the squad. It’s also already drawing major interest from some NBA stars who have yet to taste Olympic gold. USA Basketball will pare the list to a 12-person Olympic team by early summer. Jordan, who now plays for Brooklyn, is also a newcomer to the pool even though he was on the 2016 Olympic team. “But for USA Basketball to receive the commitment of so many outstanding players remains an indicator of the great honor of representing your country means to these men.”
Harden, Harris lead streaking Nets past Lakers, 109-98
Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden, left, dribbles around Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope during the first half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES – James Harden scored 23 points, Joe Harris added 21 with six 3-pointers and the Brooklyn Nets routed the short-handed Los Angeles Lakers 109-98 Thursday night for their season-best fifth straight victory. Kyle Kuzma added 16 points and 10 rebounds for Los Angeles, which lost for only the second time in 10 games. Los Angeles intends to be conservative with the All-NBA big man, allowing him to return to full strength before he plays again. James was also the youngest in NBA history to 5,000 points, 10,000 points, 20,000 points and 30,000 points.
Embiid, Simmons lead 76ers past short-handed Nets 124-108
Philadelphia 76ers' Ben Simmons, left, dunks the ball against Brooklyn Nets' Iman Shumpert during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021, in Philadelphia. Simmons played a complete game on both ends of the court, finishing with 16 points, 12 rebounds, eight assists and three steals to help the Philadelphia 76ers to a 124-108 victory over the short-handed Brooklyn Nets on Saturday night. Joel Embiid scored 33 points and Tobias Harris added 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Eastern Conference-leading 76ers, who have won five of six. “I think you have to coach him and be around him to see his value,” Philadelphia coach Doc Rivers said. “I do think fatigue played a part,” coach Steve Nash said after Brooklyn played the second game of a back-to-back.
Westbrook, Beal hit late 3s, Wizards stunt Nets 149-146
(AP Photo/Nick Wass)WASHINGTON – Wizards coach Scott Brooks envisioned something like this when Washington acquired Russell Westbrook from Houston for John Wall and a draft pick. Bradley Beal and Westbrook hit 3-pointers in a wild 3.8-second sequence in the final seconds to help the Wizards stun Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets 149-146 on Sunday night. Westbrook had 41 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists, and NBA scoring leader Beal had 37 points. In the fourth quarter, Beal had 22 points and Westbrook had 15. “Russell willed this game,” Brooks said about Westbrook, who has only played in 10 of 16 games due to a quad injury.
Durant scores 34, Nets charge back from 18 down, top Nuggets
(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)NEW YORK – Kevin Durant had 34 points, 13 assists and nine rebounds, Bruce Brown made a huge contribution while starting for the absent Kyrie Irving, and the Brooklyn Nets rallied from 18 down to beat the Denver Nuggets 122-116 on Tuesday night. Durant followed with Brooklyn's next six points, including a 3-pointer that essentially put it away at 120-113 with 27 seconds to play. They want to come out and compete, and everybody came with it tonight, especially in the second half,” Durant said. Nets: Before the game, coach Steve Nash wasn't sure if Durant would play Wednesday at New York. “We have to judge these things day to day and moment to moment.” Durant said afterward he planned to play.
Grizzlies lose Morant to ankle injury, beat Nets in overtime
Brooklyn Nets center DeAndre Jordan, left, defends against a shot by Memphis Grizzlies forward Brandon Clarke during the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 28, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)NEW YORK – Ja Morant exited with a sprained ankle but the Memphis Grizzlies earned their first victory of the season without him, outlasting the short-handed Brooklyn Nets 116-111 in overtime Monday night. Morant rejoined his teammates on the bench in the second half with his foot in a walking boot. Kyle Anderson scored a career-high 28 points and Dillon Brooks added 24 for the Grizzlies, who had dropped their first two games. The Nets opened a six-game homestand, their longest since playing six straight games at Barclays Center during the 2015-16 season.
VanVleet, Powell lead Raptors past Nets 104-99 for 2-0 lead
The victory gave the Raptors a 2-0 lead in the first round plyoff series. Kyle Lowry had 21 points, nine rebounds and forced a big turnover in the closing seconds for the second seeded Raptors. But this game was much closer as the Nets built a 14-point lead in the first quarter. Toronto was in control after that, stretching the lead to eight on Powell's drive and dunk from the right wing. Caris LeVert had 16 points and 11 rebounds, Jarrett Allen and Joe Harris each had 14 points and 15 rebounds for the Nets.
Caris LeVert's 34 lead Nets past Wizards, 118-110
The Nets moved seven games ahead of ninth-place Washington in the Eastern Conference standings, and now the Wizards hopes of forcing a play-in series are fading. Thomas Bryant had a career-high 30 points and 13 rebounds, and Troy Brown Jr. added 22 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists for the Wizards. The Nets are without DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Dinwiddie and Taurean Prince because of positive coronavirus tests before the restart. His 170 jams last season tied Kenyon Martin (2002-03) for the most in a season since the stat first was kept during the 1997-98 season. He is in his first season with the Nets after signing a two-way contract with the team in January.
Magic beat Nets 128-118 in restart opener, move up to 7th
They extended their winning streak to four and moved back ahead of the Nets into seventh place in the Eastern Conference. The Magic outscored the Nets 75-43 in the middle two quarters, allowing them to overcome some shaky defense at the start and finish. So Brooklyn started two players who hadn't started an NBA game this season one who never had. Veteran Jamal Crawford, signed as a substitute player after not playing in the NBA this season, did not play. Nets: Play Washington on Sunday.
Down in Disney, Bucks hope to finish the job this season
FILE - In this a Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo reacts to his shot the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Philadelphia 76ers in Milwaukee. If Antetokounmpo can shoot like that in real games, maybe the Milwaukee Bucks can finish the job and win the title this season. The Bucks are too, bringing the NBAs best record into the resumption of the season next week at Walt Disney World. The Toronto Raptors exploited that last season, with versatile, big defenders such as Kawhi Leonard, Pascal Siakam and Serge Ibaka who could keep Antetokounmpo from the rim and make him shoot outside. The Bucks believe this season they have enough to go all the way, even without getting to use the home-court advantage they likely would have earned.
Despite virus cases, Nets say no thought to skipping restart
Spencer Dinwiddie is a maybe, with his status unclear after both he and Jordan tested positive for the coronavirus. The Brooklyn Nets don't look ready for a restart, but general manager Sean Marks said Wednesday there was no discussion of the team not traveling to Florida for the resumption of the NBA season. Vaughn had moved Jordan into the starting lineup, but now the job apparently goes back to Jarrett Allen. They eventually decided it was best to first come back to Brooklyn, and both Dinwiddie and Jordan tested positive after returning. He sent his family to Phoenix when the virus struck New York, only to find that Arizona's cases are now rising.