Nets edge L.A. Clippers on Jack’s winner

By on February 3, 2015

From the opening buzzer Monday, this was a different Brooklyn squad – more assertive, more prideful, certainly more competitive. Still, as the fourth quarter unfolded, a talent gap emerged and the Clippers were firmly in control, holding a 96-87 advantage following Matt Barnes’ finger roll with 1:47 remaining.

The ensuing sequences were both unexpected and quick. Following one of the many putback dunks from Clippers center DeAndre Jordan (22 points, 20 rebounds) with 1:11 left, the Nets scored 10 straight points in a span of 50 seconds. The stretch was highlighted by a four-point play from Alan Anderson, who buried a trey from the corner while being fouled by Griffin with 15.3 seconds remaining. It gave the Nets a two-point advantage, triggering an eruption from the Barclays Center crowd. “As soon as it left my hand, I knew it was good,” Anderson said.

Chris Paul (20 points, eight assists, eight rebounds) responded with the game-tying layup for the Clippers (33-16), setting up a hero finish from Jack. The point guard, who only three nights prior scored a career-high 35 points in 53 minutes in a loss to the Raptors, took a pass off the inbounds, drawing Jordan on a defensive switch.

Jack took a couple dribbles, created space and buried the midrange game-winner. The Clippers couldn’t get off a final shot.“That was crazy. Like everything went perfectly right,” Jack said about the comeback.

The Nets (19-28) earned their first home victory of 2015, snapping a seven-game losing streak at Barclays Center. It also was just their third win in the last 15 games.

Deron Williams returned following an 11-game absence because of a fractured rib, scoring 15 points in 29 strong minutes off the bench. Brook Lopez led Brooklyn with 24 points.

Afterward, there were rare sights in the Nets locker room – smiles, jokes, laughing. Jack said his celebratory dance following the game-winner was called the “1-thou-wow shuffle,” a move he apparently lifted from Joe Johnson.

“Our spirit has come back,” coach Lionel Hollins said. “We are scrapping, scratching and clawing.”

FOUL FOUL SHOOTING: The teams’ 37.2% combined free-throw shooting was the worst one-game total in NBA history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

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