February 8, 2023


NEW YORK — Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving suddenly has a lot of responsibility on his shoulders. Once Kevin Durant sprained his right MCL against the Miami Heat, the Nets’ offense became about Irving scoring and whatever he could create for others. However, he pointed to something else as the reason for Sunday’s 112-102 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder.

“Just defense,” Irving said during his postgame press conference. “And, I think it was the whole game if you ask me. Just them playing with an unbelievable rhythm and pace and us just not being able to stay in front of the ball at times.” Irving had just 15 points (7-of-20 shooting from the field) as it looked like he ha trouble trying to score against the likes of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Lu Dort.

The fourth quarter was where Brooklyn lost the game and that’s similar to what happened Thursday against the Boston Celtics. “And, just a little 50/50 detail plays that I was talking about against Boston,” Irving continued. “I mean, you look at that game, there were so many controllable plays that could have gone to us. It’s a heck of a effort that you put forth, when you play defense for 22 seconds, 23 seconds, and they come in and get the rebound, you know, takes the air out of the out of the building a little bit not of our team.”

Even though Brooklyn out-rebounded Oklahoma City 51-50, the Nets allowed the Thunder to get 11 offensive rebounds and score 10 fast-break points which could have been the difference in the game. Brooklyn’s next game is Tuesday at the San Antonio Spurs.

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Story originally appeared on Nets Wire



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