BROOKLYN NETS: Deron Williams Takes Out His Frustrations Over Saturday's Loss On The Phoenix Suns.
This wasn't exactly Phoenix Rising. But, Deron Williams came back home to Brooklyn with something to prove. After conducting an introspective systems check following Sunday's failure in Washington, he became a man on a mission, and took it upon himself to extinguish the Suns Monday night at Barclays Center.
With a microphone in his face after the game, Deron Williams said, "I didn't like the way I played last game. I got outplayed by John Wall...."
So, he took out his frustrations on Phoenix. Williams torched the Suns for a game high 28 points, shooting a highly efficient 11/13 from the floor, and 3/5 from beyond the arch. That translates to an 80% shooting percentage.
Deron's team mates felt the heat he was generating, and played exactly the way they needed following such a letdown against the Wizards - a game they had in hand until they all froze up midway through the final quarter.
In their first game back home, the Nets led the Phoenix Suns from beginning to end. All five Flatbush starters scored in double-digits. Livingston finished with 12 points, and Joe Johnson scored 19 points. Both men tied for the team lead with 5 assists each. Big man on campus, Mason Plumlee added a double-double, with 14 points, and a game high 11 rebounds. Paul Pierce finished with 10 points.
Brooklyn got back on defense. They limited the Suns to 23 points in three of the four quarters, and kept them below 90 for the game. They now rank 8th in the league in points allowed.
The Nets improved to 7-2 in Kevin Garnett's absence., and now sport a 34-31 season record.
In the Atlantic Division standings, Brooklyn's 106-89 victory over the Suns, once again gets them to within 3 games of the 1st place Toronto Raptors who lost Monday. The Nets remain in 6th place of the Eastern Conference standings.
The Charlotte Bobcats come to Flatbush next. The Bobcats are currently the Eastern Conference 7th seeded team, just 2.5 games behind the Nets. The teams will conclude their season series on March 26th. The Bobcats defeated the Nets in their first meeting back in November. Brooklyn then repaid the favor with a 105-89 victory in February.