Who: New Jersey Nets vs Charlotte Bobcats
What: NBA Basketball – Nets Home Game
When: 7:30 PM ET
Where: Live at the Prudential Center, Newark, NJ.
|New Jersey||15-33||101.6 (19)||108.6 (30)||91.0 (26)|
|Charlotte||7-37||94.0 (30)||108.2 (29)||92.6 (18)|
New Jersey: Brook Lopez- OUT
Charlotte: Eduardo Najera- OUT, DeSagna Diop- DTD
|PG||Deron Williams||Kemba Walker|
|SG||Anthony Morrow||Gerald Henderson|
|SF||Marshon Brooks||Derrick Brown|
|PF||Kris Humphries||Bismack Biyombo|
|C||Shelden Williams||Byron Mullens|
|6th Man||Jordan Farmar||Byron Mullens|
The Bobcats and Nets will meet tonight for the fourth time this season. The first three games have all fallen in the Nets favor and tonight is the last chance for Charlotte to avoid the season sweep. As of last Friday, the NBA’s trade deadline, former Bobcat Gerald Wallace was traded for the second straight season and now finds himself facing his old team in an eastern conference jersey team this time. Nets to complete to sweep of Bobcats? Let’s get to it with the QCH panel and Justin Defeo from ‘Nets Are Scorching’ ESPN TrueHoop blog.
1- Last night, D.J. Augustin posted him first 0 point performance when playing 10+ minutes for the entire season. Augustin also had a season low 2 assists. Shouldn’t Augustin be asserting himself more right now, considering he’s basically auditioning for free-agency this summer?
Bryan Wendland: You would think he should be doing everything he can to cash in this coming offseason, but not only did he go 0-fer yesterday, he hasn’t been playing well enough to earn a raise since he came back from injury anyway.
Jenn Kimbal: Not sure what’s going on with Augustin, you would think that he would want to portray himself in the best light possible for prospective teams. I’d like to blame the stress of the recently elapsed trade deadline, his toe injury or the shortened season for his less than stellar performance, but I don’t believe that any of these factors is the real reason for his declining game.
Justin DeFeo (Nets Are Scorching): Looking from afar I would say that with Kemba waiting in the wings, Augustin probably does not factor into the longterm plans of Charlotte too heavily. I would absolutely expect him to try and “audition” more as you say for his next job in the NBA, cause most likely it may not be with the Bobcats.
2- Since being traded to New Jersey, former Bobcat Gerald Wallace’ FG% has plummeted from 47% to 35% and ‘Crash’ has also taken 3 more 3-pointers per game in New Jersey (5.3) than he did in Portland (2.3). What’s causing the change in offensive procedure for Wallace?
Bryan: For one, he’s playing four more minutes per game in NJ than Portland. Also, and maybe more importantly, he’s probably the second best player on the Nets and he’s being asked to do more in New Jersey. Maybe he’s just taking some time to fit in to whatever NJ is trying to do offensively.
Jenn: Any time a player changes teams, it is inevitable that he will serve a different role within that franchise. Further, Wallace was clearly taken off guard by the trade saying, “I had just talked to my agent the day before [the trade deadline], and was told nothing would be happening, so it’s kind of a shock for me”. It may take a little while for Wallace to effectively transition into his new and more significant role with the Nets.
Justin: Having not gotten to watch a ton of Wallace’s game prior to his arrival with the Nets, I will say that the rise in 3pt attempts is likely by design. With Brook Lopez getting injured in the beginning of the season really changed what the Nets do offensively and they adopted more of a 4 out motion to allow Deron Williams to have the maximum amount of driving angles. In that scenario Wallace becomes more of a spot up player. I’d also guess that with the lack of practice time, the Nets haven’t fully been able to develop sets around Wallace’s strengths.
3- Pick it (two questions)- After already dropping 57 on the Charlotte once this season, will Deron Williams light the Bobcats up again for, let’s say, 35+ points? The Nets have won the first 3 meetings so far this season- two of them came in Charlotte. Any reason to expect a different result tonight?
Bryan: Williams will have the best stat line of the game, but I don’t know if he’ll go off for 35+. I definitely see a massive double-double in his future. As for the game itself, the only reason to think the outcome will favor the Bobcats is the Nets are just as capable of vomiting all over themselves through a game as Charlotte is. The only difference so far this season is the ‘Cats have done it more often.
Jenn: Yes and no. Given that Williams is averaging over 20 points per game this season, expect to see him pull out a 35+ game tonight against the worst team in the NBA. If anything, coming off a blistering loss to the Bucks last night, I wouldn’t be surprise to see the Bobcats play worse than in prior match ups.
Justin: I would not be surprised if Deron Williams went off for a 35+ point game tonight, especially considering he’s somewhat due for a hot shooting night (7-25 from three over his last 5 games). As far as the winner of tonight’s game, believe it or not the Nets play worse at home, so being in NJ could be a benefit to the Bobcats. Also the Nets are in the middle of a stretch of some of their worst basketball this season. All that being said, I still like their chances and that’ll be my pick, Nets by 5.