ATLANTA — Brooklyn Nets megastar Kevin Durant scored a career-high 55 issues that incorporated a career-high 8 3-pointers on Saturday evening — however the ones were not the numbers he used to be all for after a disappointing 122-115 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.
Durant used to be pissed off that his staff used to be “undisciplined” defensively and could not recover from the truth that they allowed the Hawks to visit the unfastened throw line 49 instances in comparison to simply 19 makes an attempt for the Nets.
“We’re fouling early,” Durant stated. “We put them in the bonus early every quarter. 37-14 [difference in] free throw makes. And it’s not ’cause of the refs, it was because we’re reaching and being undisciplined and just playing too aggressive. That’s the game. They shot 42 percent from the field which is great defense, 31 from the 3. They outrebounded us by two, and one more assist than us … it’s just fouls. And we can’t do that if we want to be a winning team.”
With the loss, the 40-38 Nets slid into tenth position within the Eastern Conference with simply 4 regular-season video games final. On an evening once they must were celebrating Durant’s brilliance — particularly given the Nets had been taking part in with out Goran Dragic (well being and protection protocols), Bruce Brown (non-COVID sickness) and Seth Curry (sprained left ankle) — the Nets had been left to lament the truth they could not give you the help to near crucial recreation over a staff that simply jumped them within the standings.
“It doesn’t even feel like he had 55 tonight,” Nets guard Kyrie Irving stated. “You know what I mean? Just the way that we feel about the game afterwards.”
For his section, Durant — who completed the evening 19-for-28 from the sphere, 8-for-10 from past the arc, 9-for-11 from the foul line and added seven rebounds and 3 assists in 42 mins — stated this actual loss wasn’t any further disappointing given his profession evening.
“Every loss is deflating,” Durant stated. “I ain’t even worried about that, I’m just mad at the loss. I’m glad I shot the ball well. Made eight 3s, a career high, but I wish we would have came out with a W just by doing the little stuff. My points are going to come, my shots are going to come, but the little stuff that we got to do, we got to be on the same page with.”
Like a lot of his teammates, Irving struggled to discover a rhythm on both finish of the ground. He completed simply 12-for-32 from the sphere and took “full accountability” for wanting to do a greater task defensively within the put up and “play without fouling.” On most sensible of the defensive problems, Irving used to be disillusioned that he and the remainder of the Nets could not do extra to lend a hand Durant at the offensive finish.
“We just have to ease his burden on the offensive end,” Irving stated. “He’s going to be Kevin Durant. We know who he is. We know what he’s capable of, but we have to be there to support him. And we have to be there ready to play just as much as he is and not allow frustration seep in at all.”
Despite the loss, each Durant and Irving stay satisfied that the Nets can nonetheless get again on target earlier than the play-in match begins in lower than two weeks.
“I can’t come in here acting like I’m losing confidence,” Durant stated. “We lost some games and we’re going to keep playing until it’s over. That’s how I feel.”
Irving echoed a an identical sentiment.
“This is just a metaphor, you go home, you get your bulletproof vest, you go get your hand gun, you go get your rocket launcher, you go get your AK. You load up everything,” Irving stated. “You load up all the ammo. This is just a metaphor, people. But you go home, you get ready for war and you don’t just live with the results, but you go out there with a mental focus and a no fear attitude, and you really play for each other and that’s what it comes down to. We don’t have any time to waste.”
What the Nets wasted on Saturday used to be an all-time Durant efficiency in a profession that has been stuffed with Hall of Fame-worthy highlights. They could not benefit from the excessive of his non-public fulfillment for the reason that low used to be so low.
“We didn’t play a good ballgame,” Nets trainer Steve Nash stated. “I can’t really sugarcoat it.”