Friday night in New Jersey the Nets finally won their first game of the 2009-10 NBA regular season, beating the Charlotte Bobcats 97-91. It was the first game for new Nets interim head coach Kiki Vandeweghe.
The game was fairly close from start to finish, with the Bobcats leading by one point after the first quarter, by four at the half, and by one after three quarters. But the Nets stepped up big in the fourth and now have one win and 18 losses.
Nets center Brook Lopez (12-of-22) scored 31 points and grabbed 14 rebounds. Courtney Lee, starting at shooting guard, shot 11-of-16 (3-of-4 three-pointers) for 27 points, four rebounds and three steals. Point guard Devin Harris, still not completely healthy, shot just 2-of-14 but hit 11-of-13 free throws for 16 points and 8 assists.
As a team, New Jersey shot just 39.1%, but they fought hard and had 87 field goal attempts, while the Bobcats only took 73 shots.
Terrence Williams struggled off the New Jersey bench, shooting 2-of-12. But like his teammates, the rookie hustled hard all game.
Charlotte struggled with ball control with 18 turnovers. The Nets had just seven.
For the Bobcats, point guard Raymond Felton shot 11-of-14 (4-of-4 threes) for 28 points, five rebounds and four assists. Shooting guard Stephen Jackson shot 10-of-23 for 28 points. Gerald Wallace had an amazing stat-line: 13 points, 20 rebounds, five assists and two blocks. And starting center Tyson Chandler added 13 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks.
But, no one else on the Bobcats did much of anything. Boris Diaw was an awful 1-of-6 with six assists, and the Bobcats bench combined to shoot 2-of-13 for just five points and one assist between three reserves who got minutes.
The next Nets win may come sooner than it took to get their first. Sunday the team will visit New York to face the beatable Knicks. Tuesday, they head to Chicago where they’ll meet the inconsistent Bulls. On Wednesday, the Nets host the Golden State Warriors. And Friday, they head to Indiana to play the Pacers. It wouldn’t surprise InsideHoops.com to see the Nets win at least one of those games.
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