The Brooklyn Nets fell short of a miracle comeback against the Phoenix Suns in their last game so they came into Tuesday’s matchup with the New York Knicks with a chip on their shoulder. The Nets trailed the Knicks 61-60 going into halftime but came into the third quarter blazing hot as they kicked off the second half with a 14-0 run. Nets star Kevin Durant struggled in the first half as he shot just 2-9 from the field, but played a major role in the second half as he went on a run in the 4th quarter where he had scored 11 of the Nets last 13 points. The Nets went on to win the game 112-110 and hold firm to the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
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Kevin Durant & James Harden Have Animated Exchange
The Knicks trailed big in the contest but played their hearts out until the bitter end. The biggest play of the night for the Knicks came when they trailed 107-110 in the 4th quarter and their guard Evan Fournier hit a triple to tie the game in the final seconds. The play was a blown defensive coverage by the Nets as Fournier basically got an uncontested look for three.
After the bucket Nets’ head coach Steve Nash called timeout. As they were heading towards the bench Nets stars Durant and James Harden were seen having a rather animated conversation about the blown play which continued through the entirety of the timeout.
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Harden Responds to Reggie Miller’s Advice
Despite having a triple-double in the contest, Harden had arguably his worst performance of the season in the Nets’ previous game against the Phoenix Suns. He shot just 4-15 from the field in the loss. But Harden bounced back in a big way in Brooklyn’s win over the Knicks on Tuesday. “The Beard” finished with 34 points, 10 rebounds, and 8 assists. Harden had 28 points in the first half alone and was seemingly more aggressive than he has been all season.
Nets fans have NBA Hall of Famer Reggie Miller to thank for that. The Hall of Famer was in the building as he was calling the game for TNT and gave Harden some advice about his struggles before the game.
“Some good motivation, something I needed,” Harden said of Miller’s advice per Matt Brooks of NetsDaily.
Nash, Durant Sound Off on Nets Identity
For much of the year, it has felt the Nets have struggled to find out just who they are as a team. But win or lose the Nets have taken each game as a lesson in their quest to get better. Now sitting firmly in the East’s top spot, Brooklyn is finally starting to figure out who they are.
“I feel like we have our identity,” Durant said per NetsDaily. “We know what type of team we want to be and we know the formula for us to play well.”
Nets head coach Steve Nash echoed KD’s sentiments.
“I think our team is on his journey and path to find an identity and tonight was a step in that direction,” Nash said. “For us, it’s about building and growing. We want to win games, but we also want to grow, we want to improve and try to find an identity.”
The Nets have struggled at points this season, but they finally seem like they are starting to put it all together. They’ll have a chance to extend their lead in the Eastern Conference in their next game against the Minnesota Timberwolves.