April 22nd, 2014
Brooklyn Nets vs. Toronto Raptors Game 2 Recap
Final Score: Nets 95 Raptors 100
The Brooklyn Nets after a big Game 1 win in Toronto fell a little short in Game 2 against the Toronto Raptors. In what was really a must win game for the young Raptors, not wanting to head to Brooklyn down two games in the series, but they avoided that and tied the series at a game a piece with the victory.
Player of the Game: Joe Johnson
Once again for the Nets their best player against the Raptors was Joe Johnson, who led the Nets in scoring in the Game 2 loss. Johnson finished with a team-high 18 points on seven for 13 shooting to go along with three rebounds and two assists. Most of Johnson’s damage came in the third quarter, as he scored 12 points in the Nets best quarter of the game. In the fourth quarter however Johnson did struggle against Landry Fields, in what was a change in the Raptors rotation that we will likely be seeing again in Game 3.
Coming off the bench Mirza Teletovic was the first man in for Brooklyn, as Paul Pierce picked up two fouls very quickly in the first, but in extended minutes Teletovic played well. Teletovic was the only Net in double-figures off the bench, scoring 14 points on five for 11 shooting, which included him going three for six from beyond the arc.
After a difficult Game 1, Center Kevin Garnett bounced back with a much better performance on the offensive end in Game 2. Garnett finished with 13 points on five for six shooting with four rebounds in 19 minutes. Shaun Livingston also came through with a strong Game 2, as he finished with 12 points on four for eight shooting to go with five assists and three rebounds.
For the second straight game, Terrance Ross was completely shutdown, as the young Ross is having a difficult start to his playoff career. Ross scored just two points on one for eight shooting, and for the series now is just two for 12 with five points.
In his playoff debut, DeMar DeRozan looked a bit shell-shocked and nervous, but in Game 2 it looked like the DeRozan that was in the top 10 in the NBA in scoring. DeRozan finished with a game-high 30 points on nine for 21 shooting, and went an impressive 12 for 14 from the free throw line. In the fourth quarter DeRozan exploded for 17 points, which included some big baskets and clutch free throws to earn the victory.
The big men in the Raptors starting lineup were great in Game 2, as Amir Johnson and Jonas Valanciunas both dominated the Nets on the glass, helping them win the rebounding battle 52-30. Johnson finished just shy of a double-double with 16 points on eight for 10 shooting, and nine rebounds. Valanciunas had yet another big double-double, as he finished with 15 points on five for nine shooting to go along with a game-high 14 rebounds.
Similar to Game 1 the Raptors got big performances from their bench, as the small rotation is working well for the young Raptors. Greivis Vasquez did very well again, scoring 10 points on five for 10 shooting, with eight assists, and three rebounds. Patrick Patterson continued to be a scoring threat off the bench, as he finished with 12 points on five for nine shooting, and he also helped dominate the glass with nine rebounds. Fields may not have scored, but his defense against Johnson was a major factor in the fourth quarter.
Deron Williams coming off a strong Game 1 had a tough time getting it going in Game 2. Williams struggled to score 15 points on five for 15 shooting with only five assists. Paul Pierce also struggled to get it going after a clutch fourth quarter in Game 1. Pierce finished with only seven points on two for 11 shooting, as it took him until the fourth quarter to get his first field goal.
Next up for the Nets will be a few days off as the series shifts to Brooklyn for Game 3 on Friday night.