The Nets seem to have been on a roller coaster ride this year. From the beginning, they were stable in the East for a month or two, and then hit rock bottom due to injuries and turmoil and the Harden trade turmoil. But now the main players have returned to the team one after another. At the end of the season, the late game was pulled out strongly. The following is the process of the Nets’ regular season, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the team I see, and analyze the Nets’ first-round series.
This year’s Nets seem to have experienced a roller coaster experience. From the beginning, they were stable in the Eastern District for a month or two, and they fell to the bottom due to injuries and turbulence and Harden’s Trade me storm. But now the main players have returned to the team one after another. At the end of the season, the late game was pulled out strongly. The following is the process of the regular season of the Nets, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of the team that the author sees, and analyzes the first series of the Nets.
Regular season record: 44 wins, 38 losses
After the Nets ended the season with a one-toe difference in the second round, they extended Durant’s contract in the off-season and actively strengthened their manpower in the free market, just to hit the championship this season. Missing most of the season due to the New York City government’s epidemic prevention regulations, without Irving, the Nets are obviously at a disadvantage in the face of first-tier teams such as the Warriors, Suns, Bucks, etc., but there are also dual-core Harden and Durant. Under the circumstances, the Nets can still maintain the top two in the Eastern Conference at the beginning of the season.
All the changes started in the 1/16 home game against the Pelicans. Durant accidentally injured his knee by a teammate. The Nets’ record seemed to be on a stall train. The record in February was only 3 wins and 9 losses, with 11 losses in the middle. losing streak. During this period, Nash began to use a large number of newcomers. Cam Thomas, Day’ron Sharpe, Kessler Edwards and David Duke Jr. all got a lot of playing time at this time. Cam Thomas played with confidence during this time. He averaged 16.5 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 27 minutes per game, and Edwards also proved on the court that he was a ready-to-play force in the NBA, and Edwards was the 3-and-D wing the Nets had long lacked. Although the rookie had a good performance during this period, it was still difficult for him to take the lead. When his record fell to the play-off spot, Harden was also dissatisfied with the current situation of the Nets. He finally came to Philadelphia through a trade, and the Nets also traded this time. In response to the weaknesses of the formation, he did his best to strengthen the rebounding monster Drummond. In addition to consolidating the Nets’ rebounding, the Nets also had a center who could compete with the opponent’s strong center. In addition, Seth Curry was also reimbursed for Joe Harris for the season. When Mills was overworked and lost, the shooter had one more record. After all, Harris was the only shooter in last year’s playoffs. It happened that Harris had a sluggish feel during that time, which made the Nets lack the perimeter firepower when Durant was double-teamed. Curry’s career 3-point percentage is as high as 43.9%, and he will be a reliable shooter in the playoffs!
Looking at the process of the regular season of the Nets this season, the Nets played very bumpy this season, and the salary space was given to the Big Three. As a result, the injuries and those who did not receive the vaccine were also banned from the game, which also led to the subsequent departure of Harden from the team. However, in terms of the odds of winning the championship at the end of the season, the Nets are still ranked third and arrogant. It can be seen that the Nets with double K still have the ability to disrupt the game and threaten the top seeds, but this ups and downs season, the Nets are in the regular season. There are hidden concerns that make them challenging to win the O’Brien Gold Cup. What are the hidden concerns of the Nets? Let’s explore them one by one.
Hidden Worry 1: Mills’ second-half trek
At the beginning of the season, Mills had a hot shooting touch, especially catch and shoot, and the efficiency of the combination with the center forward was amazing, but when the main team was injured and entered the safety protocol, Mills was forced to switch to the playmaker. During this period He needs ball handling and playmaking, but that’s not his area of expertise, so he only took 4.9 catch and shoot threes in February, compared to 7.6 in December and 7.6 in January. There are 6.5 times. As a shooter who used catch and shoot as a scoring tool, he was forced to organize the team’s offense when there was a shortage of soldiers. As Nash’s most trusted top scorer at the time, he also played for more than 33 minutes. This also indirectly caused Mills to be completely lost in the second half of the season. Nash still kept playing him to find his touch despite his poor shooting feel, but the opposite defensive end was ruthlessly managed. Is there a sense of sight that Harris played against the Bucks in the second round last year? At present, the main shooter Mills is in highs and lows, and Curry has not fully recovered from his ankle injury. Except for double-K, the Nets need these shooters to jump out for support.
Hidden worry 2: The lineup is extremely deformed, and there is no high-quality 3D flank
The direction of reinforcements for the Nets in the offseason is also destined to give them a deformed lineup this season. The Nets’ free/trade market filled players, either with too many short guards to carry the 3, or enough people who can only play the 5 but unable to play the twin towers, resulting in Blake Griffin, Aldridge and rookie Sharpe at the end of the season. There’s no room left. Griffin’s degeneration and poor perimeter grasp all season fell out of the rotation, and Aldridge is easy to be called on the defensive end, but Nash doesn’t seem to plan to consider defensive strategies other than full-scale switching, just seems to tell the opponent, as long as I change me Just let you eat enough concept. In addition, the injured Aldridge is no longer in the rhythm, and the center replacement at the end of the season is only Drummond and Claxton. Now it seems that Blake Griffin and Aldridge have become waiting for the championship ring, but the actual combat power they can provide can’t be expected.
Another problem is the short guard. At the end of the season, Nash will fix the rotation, but for a long time, there will be three small guards of Irving+Seth+Mills or Dragic. Except for Irving’s single-handed defense, others are not good at defense. of players, it is not surprising that they are even passed by one step. In addition to being passed by one step, if the opponent has a high flank on the court, then the opponent does not need to call anyone out, because no matter how you switch to the net, it is always a hole… The most common occurrence is in the early part of the second quarter, when Durant rests for a few minutes, and Most of the time, James Johnson or Edwards will be placed at the 4, but the tough guy Johnson has been laid off, so the responsibility of defending the opposing guard or forward after Durant is likely to fall on Edwards. Fortunately, the Nets have picked a lot in this year’s draft, otherwise there would be no 3D wing in the lineup now. Edwards is not a high-quality 3D forward at this stage, but a good defense and interference are available for the Nets in the playoffs. .
Hidden worry three: Nash’s presence and scheduling
Nash’s on-the-spot reaction has always been criticized, but the timing of his call for a timeout towards the end of the season is showing signs of being a good coach. When it comes to the short-handed playoffs, whether he can be more decisive in scheduling and on-the-spot is a turning point that can change the direction of the Nets series, and even the momentum. With the Nets’ current lineup, 0748 and 1148 may be inevitable, but Nash’s biggest problem personally thinks that it is the timing of scheduling and calling a timeout. If he can do these two points well, the Nets will have a chance in the playoffs. , go longer.
Advantage:Competitive offense will not lose
The biggest advantage of the Nets is the double-K offensive firepower. When the defensive team has a tacit understanding and the lineup cannot be changed in a short time, it relies on the offensive decisive battle. Last year, Durant alone almost brought down the Bucks. Health, this kind of offensive firepower may really have the opportunity to refresh our understanding of playoff basketball, but I personally feel that it is a pity for Johnson. Ban is in possession of the ball, but unfortunately he may be cut due to injury at the end of the season, otherwise Johnson is really good except for the perimeter.
Battle Analysis: Celtic (2) vs Nets (7)
The Celtics and the Nets can be said to be close friends. Last year, the Nets fought with the complete lineup of the healthy Big Three against the Celtics, who were only led by Tatum. Coincidentally, the Nets entered the second season in the East last year. In the playoffs, at the same time, Celtic also went through the play-offs to ensure the final seventh seed. In the end, the Nets also swept the Celtics 4:1.
This year, the Celtics found their strongest lineup in the second half of the season, and the advantage of the overall lineup depth has gradually come into play. The most important thing is that the two cores Tatum and Brown have both played excellent performances, with the peripheral lock Smart As well as the inside gate Willams, and Horford, who can attack, defend and have veteran experience at the same time, make them completely unstoppable. They climbed from the tenth in the East to the first in the East, and finally won the second seed!
The most important thing to watch for the two teams is Durant Irving, two epic offensive kaleidoscopes, against Tatum and Brown, the two strongest wings in the league. At the same time, the lineups of both sides are actually very complete and thick, but there is a more interesting one. The point is that Williams, the restricted area general who has guarded the Celtics for a whole season, injured his cruciate ligament at the end of the regular season. At least in the first round, he could not return. On the contrary, he was troubled by the lack of a defensive lock for a whole season. Nets, may usher in the comeback of Simmons in the first round!
Perhaps this way of contact may be the key to the outcome of the two teams. Of course, these are all unknowns. At least Celtic has a lot of experience when playing the Nets. It can be seen that as long as it enters the critical moment, it is everyone Pull away and let Smart help Tatum cover, switch Durant and Brown, who are better defensively, and let Tatum face the Nets’ short guards Curry and Irving, especially when the Nets are mainly switching defenses, as long as the switch is successful Just pull it all away, allowing Tatum to perform one-on-one Isolation in the most comfortable situation. This is definitely the biggest advantage of Celtic, and the Celtics have also done enough for this part of the Nets singles. preparation.
From the past encounters, as long as Durant performs a singles, Celtic will still use two people to block Durant in front of him. As for why he doesn’t double-team, it is to speed up the speed of his passing and going back to prevent rotation. , here you can see the difference in the mentality of the two sides. It is obviously the short man’s defensive weakness to face Tatum. The Nets are still cool to watch him single-player abuse. On the contrary, Celtic is a defender of Williams’ level. After being pulled outside, Celtic will still use the method of double containment to prevent Durant from having the opportunity to pull him out to teach him a lesson.
Battle Key: Bruce Brown
The reason why the author chose Brown as the X-Factor for the Nets to advance is that his effect of responding to double K in the middle will be a key factor in whether the Nets can play offense. Brown is known to have the nickname Small Center because he often plays pick-and-rolls with double-K and rolls in the paint. Because when playing the Green Army, the gestures will definitely contain Durant or Irving, Brown needs a short time to decide whether to knock down or distribute the ball to the outside. With his skills in the second half of the season, whether it is a short-range throw, or a small ball in the middle to the center, the ball to the outside shooter, or his long-range artillery fire that grows confidence, it will be an important offensive weapon for the Nets against the Green Army. If Brown doesn’t make the best judgment, opponents can wantonly double-team the dual core, which will be quite detrimental to the Nets.
Brown on the defensive end is also one of the few who can contribute to the Nets. He will most likely be sent to guard Jaylen Brown in the first round of the playoffs. Whether he can limit Jaylen’s performance and leave Tatum helpless is also the key to whether the Nets can advance to the next round.
First-round prediction: Nets beat Celtic 4:3
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