Joe Johnson scored 10 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter, but none were bigger than this jumper with 22 seconds remaining that gave the Nets the lead for good on the way to an 88-85 win over the Knicks that tied the season series at two games apiece.
Carmelo Anthony finished with 29 points for New York on 11-of-29 shooting, and had a good look at a shot from less than 10 feet away on the following possession.
But with Gerald Wallace defending, the attempt was an airball that went long, and Deron Williams made three of his four free throw attempts over the game’s final couple of possessions to seal it for Brooklyn.
Both teams like to shoot the ball from three-point distance, but a Knicks team that had so much success in that area in the first part of the season struggled in this one, going just 6-of-21 from beyond the arc, while the Nets were able to convert 12-of-24 from downtown, which included 5-of-8 from Johnson.
Nets’ DeMarre Carroll has ankle surgery on eve of season
The NBA’s race for the MVP award seems wide open this season. LeBron James is the favorite of the Las Vegas books (thank Lakers’ fans for that) and James Harden has been first or second three of the past four years, so he cannot be counted out. Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant have each won it before, although they tend to cancel each other out on the same team.
2018 Warriors championship rings — 74 sapphires & 74 diamonds (1 per win in RS & playoffs) — 2 trophies: 2017 in 17k gold w/ .17 carat white diamond; 2018 in 18k gold w/ .18 carat white diamond – Other details: Twist-off top, "Strength in Numbers," Bay Bridge & "The Town" logo pic.twitter.com/SSdoYTydJh
Championship rings are objectively ugly, gaudy things. But if someone offered you one, you certainly wouldn’t turn it down. Everyone wants to have a championship under their belt, and having a ridiculous ring with 74 diamonds in it and a twist-off top is just wild.
Glen Taylor says Tom Thibodeau’s job isn’t in danger
Jimmy Butler is a member of the Minnesota Timberwolves, at least until the team finds a suitable trade partner. It seems the talks between the Wolves and the Miami Heat have gone dormant, and there isn’t an openly-interested party in sight.
Meanwhile, Butler is attending practices and is expected to play in the first game of the year for Minnesota against the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday. As the team looks for trade partners, the question remains what will happen with head coach Tom Thibodeau. Things have quickly gone south under his watch, and many are calling for his firing from the outside.
In a conversation with the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, which Taylor owns, Taylor said that Thibodeau’s job is safe.
Thibodeau has three years left on a five-year contract worth about $40 million. Is he coaching for his job?
“No, no, the only thing now is that we are starting to play games and I am asking him to concentrate on coaching,” Taylor said. “GM Scott Layden will help to see if any trades are available.”
Is Taylor still happy he hired Thibodeau in April 2016?
“Yes, yes, he is a good coach and I have faith in him,” he said.
Meanwhile Taylor says that he’s not thinking about selling the team, and that they will try to grit themselves through from here on out.
It’s a tougher Western Conference this year, and it was already up in the air whether the Timberwolves were going to be a playoff team. Now, it seems as though they are destined to miss the postseason yet again after making it last year.