Final Score: Brooklyn 103, Cleveland 100
Brooklyn, NY (Sports Network) - Brook Lopez poured in 35 points on 13-of-20
shooting and ripped down 11 rebounds as the Brooklyn Nets held on for a
103-100 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday at Barclays Center.
Deron Williams netted 15 points to go with seven assists, while Joe Johnson
added 15 points for the Nets, who improved to 2-0 under interim head coach
P.J. Carlesimo. Reggie Evans and Gerald Wallace each pulled down 10 rebounds
to go with seven points in the victory.
"We're happy to be on the winning track. It has been an emotional roller
coaster," Williams said of the team's coaching change. "Hopefully that stuff
is behind us. We just have to keep playing and keep getting better."
C.J. Miles dropped 33 points and made 8-of-10 from three-point range, while
Tristan Thompson added a double-double with 17 points and 15 rebounds for the
Cavs, who have lost two straight.
Kyrie Irving netted 13 points and handed out seven assists, but missed a
potential game-tying 3-pointer at the buzzer.
Lopez buried a hook shot in the lane with 2:27 to play, pushing the Brooklyn
lead to 100-93. But the Cavs ripped off a 7-1 run, capped by a deep trey from
Irving, to cut the deficit to 101-100 with 5.9 ticks remaining.
Johnson made two free throws on the Nets' next trip down the floor to make it
103-100, leaving the Cavs with 5.4 seconds to get off the final shot.
On the final play, Irving got the ball just across the timeline on a side-out
pass and hoisted a 3-ball from well beyond the arc, but the shot hit the back
of the iron and rolled off, sealing the win for the Nets.
It was a back and forth affair for most of the first quarter as a putback slam
by Thompson pulled the Cavs within 13-11 with 5:43 on the clock, but the Nets
created some distance between the teams with a 15-2 surge.
A free throw by Evans capped the run which gave the home side a 28-13
advantage and they led 34-24 heading into the second frame.
"We're playing hard, but there are some growing pains as we're learning how to
play," Miles said. "We got off to a slow start, which really didn't help the
Brooklyn kept the Cavs at arm's length throughout the second stanza, but a
layup by Dion Waiters with 4:16 to go before the break cut the Cleveland
deficit to 47-42.
Williams answered with a layup at the other end and Lopez followed with a slam
to push the Brooklyn lead back to 51-42 with 3:43 to play.
Tyler Zeller drained a layup with 2.6 seconds on the clock, but the Cavs
trailed 61-53 at the break.
The Nets shot an impressive 60 percent from the floor over the first 24
minutes, with Lopez leading the way with 21 points on 9-of-11 shooting.
Brooklyn led by double digits for most of the third stanza as a pair of free
throws by Wallace made it 79-67 with 1:19 left, but the Cavs then came
Cleveland closed the quarter with seven straight points to cut the deficit to
79-74 heading into the fourth.
Cavs forward Anderson Varejao missed his sixth straight game with a right knee
contusion, while Daniel Gibson did not play due to a concussion ... The Nets
improved to 12-7 when leading at halftime ... Brooklyn shot 46.7 percent from
the floor, but converted 18 Cleveland turnovers into 24 points.
12/29 23:47:47 ET
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