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The Brooklyn Nets entered Friday night on a six-game unbeaten run, but the Orlando Magic stunningly prevented the Nets from taking the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
In the first half, both teams came out the gates shooting lights out. At the half, the Magic and the Nets shot over 50 percent from the field. Kyrie Irving racked up a quick 24 points while Aaron Gordon was keeping pace with 21 points.
In the second half, the Nets came out horribly defensively. The Magic managed to score a total of 103 points by the end of the third period. Brooklyn only scored 84. This left the team only the final period to comeback from a big deficit.
In the fourth quarter, Brooklyn managed to trim Orlando’s lead to only four with seven minutes left in the game. Unfortunately for Steve Nash’s squad, some important shots in the final five minutes didn’t fall and it was enough for the Magic to squeeze by, getting the win 121-113.
He had himself a night!
— Orlando Magic (@OrlandoMagic) March 20, 2021
Kyrie Irving has been extremely efficient from the field
Kyrie Irving has been really efficient with his shooting from the field and a lot of that has to do with his great shot selection as of late. Against the Magic, Irving was 19-31 from the field and went on to score 43 points. In the game against the Boston Celtics not too long ago, Uncle Drew went 13-18 from the field on his way to score 34 points. Before the All-Star break, Irving was on a cold shooting slump so to see him back having games like this a good sign for this Nets team.
A signature comeback falls short
As mentioned earlier, the Nets got the deficit to four with seven minutes left in the fourth quarter. It was as if the game was right there for the taking for Brooklyn, but yet they still lost. Bruce Brown, during the postgame press conference, mentioned how he never saw Joe Harris "miss threes" the way he did in that final period. So this was new for everybody.
Slow starts are starting to become a trend for the Nets
At the end of the first quarter Friday night, the Nets only scored 29 points while giving up 35. On Wednesday night, Brooklyn scored 25 points against the Pacers while giving up 40. These slow starts are starting to become a trend for this Nets team and this is something that fans are not used to during this hot run. Players like Bruce Brown and Landry Shamet hinted at "fatigue" probably playing a factor in how the squad has played in these last games, but at the end of the day, who knows for sure.