A lot was going on around the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday night in Sacramento, and for the first time in a while it was all positive.
The Nets (10-49) won a game for the first time in over a month, beating the Kings 109-100 and snapping a 16-game losing streak. Franchise center Brook Lopez also scored his 10,000th career point. You pick the bigger story.
For Lopez, it was an incredible personal accomplishment. He has spent his entire nine-year career with the Nets and outlasted dozens of teammates, a handful of coaches and countless trade rumors. His loyalty to the organization is not something you see everyday in professional sports, and he was finally rewarded for it by reaching a major scoring milestone.
Lopez finished with 24 points on the night, giving him 10,014 for his career. Buck Williams is the franchise’s all-time leading scorer with just 10,440 points, which goes to show that not many players don a Nets uniform for very long. If Lopez stays healthy for the remainder of the season, he could very well pass Williams and hold that honorable distinction all for himself.
Jeremy Lin added 17 points and five assists in the win for the Nets, who got off to a hot start in the first quarter and never trailed. Their 16-game skid was the second longest in franchise history.
Most importantly, Brooklyn is finally getting to see how Lopez and Lin fit in together on the court. If they keep playing like this, the team could steal a few more wins over the next month and a half. The rookies are also continuing to improve as the season wears on. Isaiah Whitehead and Caris LeVert combined to score 27 points in the victory.
Up next for the Nets on their eight-game road trip is a clash with the Utah Jazz on Friday night.
Note: The Nets had their entire roster healthy and ready to play for the first time this season. It only took 59 games, but lets see how Kenny Atkinson’s team fares moving forward with a complete lineup.
Andrew Nicholson was the team’s only inactive player on Wednesday night. Fellow newcomer K.J. McDaniels dressed but did not play.