The very night after their drubbing of the Hornets, LA got smoked by the Wizards and had no answer for anybody. Lonzo Ball was as confident as anyone after shutting Kemba down, before letting John Wall drop 40 on him.
Brooklyn, on the other hand, has followed a long losing skid by winning five in a row. It is no surprise that the recent streak overlaps the extension the team gave to Spencer Dinwiddie. They love him here.
We thought for sure that this team would be getting Trevor Ariza, but the Wizards beat them to the punch. For now, they gotta play with the guys they have. They do still possess the best player in the NBA in LeBron James, who has helped the team to an 18-12 start and has them playing their best ball since before Kobe Bryant tore his ACL. They have the ninth-highest scoring offense in the NBA thus far and hope to make it even higher in the games to come.
Brandon Ingram has continued to sit with an ankle injury, which has provided a huge opportunity to Josh Hart, who has been making the most of it. Kyle Kuzma (18 ppg) has been the only consistent scorer for this team outside of LeBron though, as it has been about defense and facilitating with Lonzo. There are a lot of areas they could still improve in, but they currently sit #4 in the west, despite a lot of roster turnover and a brand new superstar in town. Good looks.
Winners of five in a row, they have been rolling of late, and this is despite the extreme inconsistency of D’Angelo Russell. Against Atlanta however, he scored more points (32) than he did in the previous three games combined, while also dishing out seven assists, and the team put up 144 points, really putting on a show. Some nights it will be D’Angelo leading the way, while on others it will be Spencer Dinwiddie. We’ll see if the team opts to keep both of them beyond this season or if Dinwiddie could assume a starting role full-time next year.
Joe Harris has continued to knock down the three-ball at a high rate, hitting shots from beyond the arc at a 45.5% clip this year. He has been a big part of the success and should be able to keep doing what he does. Thanks to an injury to Allen Crabbe the team has been starting Latvian draft pick Rodion Kurucs, who has been playing surprisingly well. The Nets have beaten two teams with winning records (PHI and TOR) during their five-game win streak so far.
Lakers End Nets Run
Sorry, Brooklyn, we’re riding with the Lakers in this one. This Tuesday night showdown is going to be a big night for LBJ in his lone appearance at the Barclays Center this year.
Dinwiddie will score 25 off the Nets bench, but it won’t do them too much good on this night.
Free Pick: Lakers
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