January 23, 2022

KD shuts off Younger as Nets seize one other street win

ATLANTA — Trae Young had simply nailed a 3-pointer adopted by a trademark slippery layup to chop the Atlanta Hawks’ deficit to 1 level with simply over three minutes to play.

However the subsequent time down the ground, Younger watched Kevin Durant crouch in a defensive stance in entrance of him. Durant’s glorious protection on Younger over these final three minutes was key within the Brooklyn Nets’ 113-105 victory over the Atlanta Hawks Friday evening.

“Simply taking over the matchup was cool,” stated Durant, who completed with 31 factors. “These small level guards man, they’re so artful and fast. It is also enjoyable taking over that matchup, he is probably the greatest gamers within the league.”

The Hawks tried to run actions to get Durant off of Younger. However Durant nonetheless compelled the Hawks’ star right into a turnover, then blocked Younger’s shot in transition and efficiently defended one other drive because the Nets completed the sport on a 10-Three run.

At one level, Durant slammed into Younger as he was setting a display and was known as for a foul. Younger went chest-to-chest with Durant earlier than officers stepped in and known as double technical fouls.

“I used to be slightly too bodily there with that motion and I form of pushed him a bit,” stated Durant, who stated he is recognized Younger because the level guard was 10 years outdated. “He needed me to rise up out of his house and I respect that. Simply part of the sport. Nothing private, it is all competitors.”

Stated Younger in regards to the second: “We’re good.” Younger had 31 factors of his personal within the recreation however was simply 2-of-7 taking pictures within the fourth quarter with two turnovers.

After not enjoying him within the first half, Nets coach Steve Nash went with Nic Claxton at middle as an alternative of LaMarcus Aldridge down the stretch. His size together with Durant and James Johnson stuffed the Hawks, who shot simply 6-of-22 and managed simply 14 factors within the fourth quarter.

Earlier this week, the Nets accomplished a comeback win in Dallas by holding the Mavericks to only 13 factors within the fourth quarter. Brooklyn has now gained seven of its final eight street video games.

“[Defense provides] final confidence,” stated James Harden, who had 20 factors and 11 assists. “We have been having numerous ups and downs, numerous lineups and whatnot. We have simply been attempting to determine it out. It felt actually good to only guard.”