The Brooklyn Nets came into Friday night’s matchup against the Milwaukee Bucks looking to get revenge for Game 7 of last year’s Eastern Conference Semifinals matchup. For those who may be tardy to the party, the Bucks beat the Nets at home in the playoffs last year after being up 2-0 in the series. Revenge was not on the menu for the Nets as the Bucks were in control for most of the matchup. Milwaukee led by as many as 24 points in route to a 121-109 victory. They won easily despite being without several of their key players, including their starting point guard Jrue Holiday. Dating back to Game 7 of last year’s playoffs the Nets have lost three straight games against the Bucks.
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Bobby Portis Has ‘Shaqtin’ Moment
One of the pleasant surprises for the Bucks in their win over the Nets was their forward Bobby Portis who made his sixth consecutive start for Milwaukee on Friday night. Portis logged 25 points (his second-highest scoring total of the season), to go along with 12 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1 block in 32 minutes played.
But things were not all good for Portis during his big night. In the first half, the Bucks forced a turnover which left Portis all alone for what seemed like an easy two points. Portis, who scored 20 of his 25 points in the first half, whiffed on a two-handed slam which led to a Nets bucket on the other end of the floor. He’ll surely be one of the top nominees for “Shaqtin’ a Fool” this week.
Harden Sounds off on Kyrie Irving’s Status
The Nets came into their matchup against the Bucks riding high. They just overcame a 19-point deficit to win on the road against the Indiana Pacers, and more importantly, their star point guard Kyrie Irving has been reinstated. But as the Nets know, Kyrie is still ineligible to play home games, as he remains unvaccinated. To play indoor sports in New York City, eligible participants must have at least the first dose of the COVID vaccine.
Whether or not Kyrie will eventually get vaccinated and become a full-time player remains to be seen. But for now, Nets star James Harden understands that playing with a part-time Kyrie is something that the team will have to adjust to.
“It’s going to take some time because we gotta get used to him being him on the road and not at home and things like that,” Harden said after the win over the Pacers via “Forbes”. “But we’ve been a resilient group all year and we’ll eventually figure it out.”
Harden Explains His Performance Against Bucks
Harden had another lackluster performance against the Bucks, scoring 16 points on 6-15 shooting in the loss. But Harden isn’t concerned about his off-night as “The Beard” says that sometimes the shots just don’t fall.
“I feel like I tried to get to the rim, missed a couple of layups,” said Harden after the loss per NetsDaily. “The usual as far as trying to be aggressive and get to the basket and take the available shot. A couple of them didn’t fall and it is what it is.”
The Nets will have a chance to get back on track in their next game against the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday. It is a home game so they will still be without Kyrie.