The Brooklyn Nets defeated the Sacramento Kings, 127-118, in their return to Barclays Center on Tuesday night. It was the team’s seventh straight win as they now have a record of 21-12. They are just a half-game back of the Philadelphia 76ers for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
One of the more intriguing stories of this season continues to be Kings’ rookie Tyrese Haliburton. The first-round draft pick out of Iowa State had a stat line of 23 points, nine rebounds, and five assists in the loss. On the season he is averaging 13.1 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 5.4 assists per game off the bench.
Kyrie & Harden Show Love To Tyrese Haliburton
After the game, Nets stars, James Harden and Kyrie, and Kyrie Irving found the rook to give him some pointers on his game.
Being acknowledged by two of the greatest guards to play the game had to be special for the 20-year-old rookie. After the game, Haliburton talked about what that moment meant to him.
“Two guys that are at the top of this league, two of the best players in today’s game, two of the best players to ever play this game, to approach me and have that conversation with me, and obviously they see something because they don’t talk to everybody, so it means a lot to me,” Haliburton said via the Sacramento Bee.
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One of the coolest things about the NBA is that it is truly a brotherhood. The stars of today often pay it forward to the next generation, the same way previous generations have paved the way for them.
“Kyrie’s been one of my favorite players growing up,” Haliburton continued. “I’ve got all his shoes. I’m not going to wear them against him, but I’ve got them all. It’s two guys I’ve looked up to my whole life, so to get that I can’t really describe it in words, but it just keeps giving me confidence that I really belong.”
Bruce Brown Showed Out in the Win
Haliburton was not the only player being inspired by members of the Nets’ backcourt in Tuesday’s game.
Nets starter Bruce Brown scored a career-high 29 points in the contest. Brown has been a budding star for the Nets in Kevin Durant’s absence. After the game, he talked about how Kyrie has given him more confidence, which has led to him playing better.
“Kyrie comes to me all the time he sees me working on my shot and I know I can shoot the ball it’s just confidence right now,” Brown said to reporters via SNY. “So, he tells me one a game before every game and I gave him one. If you see us, he came up to me and said one and I gave him two so it was pretty cool.”
Harden also talked about what Brown means to the Nets’ success as a team.
“He does a little bit of everything. He’s a guy that just goes out there and competes his butt off every single night and great things happen for him,” Harden said via Nets Daily.
“Especially with the talent level we have on this team. He sets screens and rolls to the basket, he’s an unbelievable cutter and tonight he showed us he’s capable of knocking down the three-ball. So, he does it all he works his butt off and when you work your tail off and keep grinding and pushing good things happen for you and I’m so happy for him and I’m proud of him.”
The Nets are hitting their stride at the perfect time as the team inches closer to the All-Star break. The scariest part of it all is that they are just scratching the surface.