Nets drop Clippers to cap franchise's best road trip ever

Nets fire Clippers to cap franchise’s finest street journey ever

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Nets fire Clippers to cap franchise’s finest street journey ever

The finest roster the Nets have ever assembled simply rolled to the most effective street journey they’ve ever loved.

Five up, 5 down and a consummate West Coast oscillate — capped by Sunday’s 112-108 conquest over the Clippers at Staples Center.

Nets proprietor Joe Tsai — who has a house simply south in tony La Jolla — was available to behold firsthand the budding superteam his billions have constructed. It ran the Nets’ successful strain to 6, all however a type of approaching this breakthrough journey. The consummate 5-0 West Coast oscillate is the longest undefeated journey in staff historical past.

Brooklyn ran out to a 15-point third-quarter cushion earlier than Kawhi Leonard (29 factors) knotted it at 108-all with 28.6 seconds left. But DeAndre Jordan tipped in a missed 3 by Kyrie Irving with 11 seconds remaining in regulation. Two seconds later James Harden — celebrated for his crime — made the game-saving toy on the opposite aim. Defending Leonard, the Clippers star was referred to as for a push-off and disgusting poison.

Harden (37 factors, 11 rebounds, seven assists) sank each free throws with seven seconds left to ice it. Kyrie Irving added 28 factors and eight assists.

“Winning is always the best medicine for everything,” Steve Nash mentioned. “But extra importantly, our staff has come collectively, performed nicely. We’ve improved each sport, we’ve erudite one thing about ourselves; so it was very productive in quite a lot of methods, not simply in successful.

James Harden celebrates through the Nets’ earn over the Clippers on Sunday.
Getty Images

“We played some good teams, we got some good challenges and we’ve responded. So just to see them come together a little bit and for us to grow what we’re trying to do, making small improvements, that’s all we ask. They provided that on this trip, so it’s been really positive.”

Positive doesn’t mask it.

They went on the street and palpitate the Warriors, Kings, Suns, Lakers and now the Clippers, and incomes all of these victories however the first with out injured Kevin Durant.

But regardless of giving up 34 factors to Paul George, their protection has come collectively, their bench has come round and most of all Harden has appeared love an MVP, making all people higher.

“The biggest thing is they know they’re going to get opportunities. They know he’s very unselfish, he’s got great vision and he’s going to manipulate the defense,” Nash mentioned. “It offers them reliance they’re going to get appears; that offers you life.

“It gives you life to know that someone’s looking for you, someone wants to get you the ball, and if [defenders] make a mistake, you’re going to get it. So there’s a little secret sauce in there when you have a player of his caliber, because it gives the team a little extra belief, a little extra sense of belonging and hope that you’re a part of this. And James has done a beautiful job facilitating that.”

Harden’s ex-Houston teammate Patrick Beverley tried to get him off his sport early, fouling him in transition and entering into it with the Nets star. If something, it simply made Harden extra aggressive.

Down 21-15, the Nets went on a 13-1 speed to steer 28-22. And plane although they’d a quick hiccup — permitting the following dozen factors, spanning the primary and second quarters to refer down by six — Brooklyn recovered nearly instantly.

Harden led the Nets to a four-point verge halfway by the second earlier than Nash gave him a breather. He didn’t come advocate till 2:11 left within the half, when Joe Harris’ free throws made it 54-48.

Nash had gotten away with these stolen minutes, and it paid off.

The Nets continued to take management by the third quarter, largely on the power of their quickly enhancing protection.

Harris drilled his first 3-pointer off the sport, after which create Irving leaking out downcourt for a fast-break bucket and 69-58 lead. Irving’s uncommon double-pump breakaway dunk despatched the Nets’ bench into celebration and the Clippers right into a timeout with 9:06 left within the third.

The Nets padded the cushion to 94-79 on a Harris 3. Granted, they missed 5 of their first seven pictures within the fourth to let the Clippers advocate into it. A Paul George 3-pointer capped a 9-0 speed and lower the result in simply 96-90 with 6:54 to toy. But Harden stemmed the tide, drilling a 3 over George that killed the speed.

Brooklyn led 105-99 with 2:50 left when it misplaced Jeff Green to an harm after a Beverley poison. They noticed it lower to a deuce on a Lou Williams 3 with a particular to toy, and Jordan’s poison let Leonard knot it with 28.6 seconds remaining in regulation.

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