|Brooklyn's Kris Humphries (left) and Joe Johnson (right) during the Nets' first preseason game.|
On a Saturday night at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey, history was made. Atlantic City is widely known for its beautiful beaches and extravagant casinos, but tonight, it was the city that featured the Nets in their first preseason game with the word "Brooklyn" across each of their players' chest. This has been one of the moments Nets coaches, owners and players alike have been waiting for since the summer. Their first preseason game was against an Atlantic Division rival, the Philadelphia 76ers.
At the start of the game, the Nets came out roaring, outscoring the 76ers 30-17 through the first quarter. Philadelphia retaliated in the second quarter and cut the Nets' halftime lead to seven points. In the third quarter, the Nets responded and took a 15-point lead into the fourth quarter. However, the 76ers fought back and sent the game to overtime. Late in the overtime period, Nets reserve point guard C.J. Watson sunk two free throws in the closing seconds to give the Nets a 108-105 lead, which would turn out to be the final score. Here's some other notes from the game:
- Brook Lopez and C.J. Watson led the Nets in scoring, putting up 19 points each.
- Lopez also led Brooklyn in total rebounds, with nine.
- Deron Williams and Joe Johnson, now known as "Brooklyn's Backcourt," combined for 27 points, nine assists, five rebounds and three steals in tonight's effort.
- Nick Young led the 76ers in scoring, contributing 21 points in the loss. Young made only 5-14 shots, but converted all nine of his free throw attempts.
- Philadelphia guard Evan Turner scored 14 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out three assists while playing a game-high 33 minutes for the 76ers.
- Notable Nets that did not play due to injury include MarShon Brooks and Tyshawn Taylor. Philadelphia's Andrew Bynum was also sidelined because of recent knee surgery.
The Nets' first preseason game proved to be a success, as well as a good experience for the team's players. The starting five seemed to be comfortable right from the start, which is an assuring sign for Nets fans. Their next game will be the team's debut at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, when they take on the Washington Wizards Monday night. The game will be televised live on the YES Network.