Nets snap eight-game losing streak with 104-87 win over Bulls
The Brooklyn Nets snapped an eight-game losing streak with a 104-87 win over the Chicago Bulls Monday night in Brooklyn.
The win marks the first victory for Kenny Atkinson's squad in the month of February.
Allen Crabbe continued to stay hot, leading Brooklyn with 21 points on 7-13 shooting from the field. Jarrett Allen and DeMarre Carroll each added 18 points apiece.
Allen gave the Nets a physical presence inside the paint. He shot 8-11 from the field, grabbed nine rebounds and blocked three shots in 23 minutes.
The 19-year-old nearly blew the roof off of Barclays Center midway through the third with a posterizing slam over Lauri Markkanen that some are calling the dunk of the year. The play energized the home crowd and Brooklyn would finish the quarter on a 24-14 run to take control of the game.
Allen acknowledged the play as a spark for his team when asked about the dunk, "I get juice, everybody gets juice. You heard the crowd roar. You could look at the bench, I saw the clip of it, they went crazy. So not only do I get juice, but everybody else does."
Brooklyn received a much needed boost as Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (groin) and Caris LeVert (knee) both returned from injury. Hollis-Jefferson played solid defense in his return, something Brooklyn had been lacking at the power forward position in his absence.
The Nets had been struggling in all phases of the game throughout the month of February. However, defense had been the most pressing issue.
The defensive energy picked up against Chicago. Brooklyn held Chicago to just 35.5% shooting from the field and forced 13 turnovers.
Offensively, the ball movement was superb. Brooklyn posted 31 assists in the win. The guards penetrated off the dribble and the big men made the extra pass off of kick-outs for wide-open looks.
The win marks Brooklyn's 20th of the season, matching last year's total.
The Nets will look to gain some momentum as they travel to Cleveland for a matchup with LeBron James and the Cavaliers tomorrow night.