The Brooklyn Nets were hoping for any other outcome than what they received on Sunday afternoon. Brooklyn was on a four-game losing streak. They extended that streak to five after today's tough loss to the New Orleans Pelicans. The loss wasn't shocking, however, due to Brooklyn's decision to rest Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young for the remainder of the season. Bojan Bogdanovic and Donald Sloan were also absent in today's game. The Brooklyn front-office doesn't want to risk losing any of their stars in the last few games of a losing season. This provided the perfect opportunity for the Pelicans to snag an easy victory on the road.
New Orleans fans should be plenty happy after this win. The Pelicans had a laundry list of inactive players. Anthony Davis, Tyreke Evans, Jrue Holiday, Ryan Anderson, Eric Gordon, Norris Cole, Alonzo Gee, and Quincy Pondexter did not play in today's matchup. A 19 point win without any of those players is nothing short of impressive.
Another Loss For The Nets
It was an ugly game for the Nets. The first half was very sloppy and low-scoring for Brooklyn. This led to an 11 point deficit heading into the second. There was a little spark of hope for the Nets as they cut the Pelicans lead to just four in the second-half but New Orleans quickly extinguished that spark and dominated the Nets late in the game.
The absence of Thaddeus Young and Brook Lopez is evidently catastrophic for the Nets. Their last loss against the New York Knicks was just as ugly, and the team was only missing Young and Bogdanovic for that one. With the announcement that the Nets will be shutting down Young and Lopez for the remainder of the season, the next five games are sure to be ugly for the Nets. It will be a fitting end for a disastrous season in Brooklyn.
Babbitt Balls Out
With eight players out, the Pelicans looked to one man for most of their scoring. That man was Luke Babbitt. Babbitt scored 21 points along with four assists in today's game. The 26-year-old forward has done well as a starter in the last few games for New Orleans. Tim Frazier also had a good game for the Pelicans. He finished with 19 points and 13 assists coming off the bench. James Ennis and Alexis Ajinca also had solid performances off the bench. Ennis had 14 points and four steals. Ajinca finished with 16 points and six rebounds.
As for the Nets, Sean Kilpatrick lead the way with 15 points. Henry Sims got the start for Brooklyn and finished with 12 points and seven rebounds. Thomas Robinson had 11 points and 15 rebounds, notching a big double-double. Markel Brown grabbed 12 points off the bench. Wayne Ellington scored 10 points as a starter for the Nets. The rest of the team had lackluster stats and shot badly. Shane Larkin finished with six points on 3-12 shooting. Sergey Karasev had two points, six assists, and five rebounds in 19 minutes of playing time. With Young and Lopez out for the season, these guys have just a few games left to prove themselves. They'll have to play better than they did today if they want to impress coach Tony Brown.
The Nets will face off against the Washington Wizards on Wednesday in Washington. Washington will look to earn a much-needed win over the ailing Nets.
New Orleans heads off to Philly to face the Philadelphia 76ers. It should be another ugly contest like today's game. Philadelphia has the worst record in the league, standing at 9-68 on the season.