Site Manager Nicholas LeTourneau will be breaking down the Brooklyn Nets schedule in a three-part series. This one focuses on back-to-backs and other key games. Next up is a look at revenge games and will end with a prediction of how the season will go. Stay tuned!
It’s the middle of August. The dust has settled on all of the major free agency moves and trades; America is in a Twilight Zone episode where someone totally unqualified took over as president and in under a year has both pushed us to the brink of world war and allowed white supremacists to storm your streets; and outside of needing another forward, the Nets’ roster is pretty much squared away.
There hasn’t been a lot of basketball to discuss lately, but thankfully, the NBA schedule was released on Monday night so basketball fans have something to get lost in. Adam Silver has said the NBA made a conscious effort to reduce back to backs in order to prevent teams from resting star players during the regular season, so let’s take a look at some of back to backs and key games on the Brooklyn Nets schedule.
There is a total of 13 back-to-backs on the Brooklyn Nets’ schedule, but not all are created equal. Some will be more important or more taxing than others. Let’s take a look at some of the key ones on the season:
October 24-25 (@Orlando Magic/vs Cleveland Cavaliers)
This series is early in the season, so fatigue shouldn’t be too much of a factor. However, traveling from Orlando to Brooklyn to face LeBron James, Kevin Love and maybe Kyrie Irving. Brooklyn will undoubtedly come out of the gates swinging, looking to catch teams off guard that are still trying to mesh or are already overlooking the Nets on their schedule.
If the playoffs are something the Nets truly want to accomplish, then they will need to at least get good at splitting these back-to-backs. Winning in Orlando is very doable, but beating Cleveland is a tough outing for any team.
Expect Brooklyn to split this one.
November 6-7/10-11 (@Phoenix Suns/@Denver Nuggets, @Portland Trail Blazers/@Utah Jazz)
I decided to roll these into one section because the individual back-to-backs isn’t that impressive or daunting. But, these will be coming all on the same road trip, which is very significant. Jeremy Lin isn’t injury-prone, but that doesn’t mean I won’t wince every single time he hits the deck, especially on long road trips and back-to-backs like this.
The bottom of the Western Conference can usually hang with the average team in the Eastern Conference, but some of these games should be winnable. The Suns are still in the middle of a rebuild and are a giant question mark of youth, so Brooklyn’s balance of veterans and youngsters, paired with Kenny Atkinson’s incredible coaching, should handle them. The rest of the teams will be true tests.
The Denver Nuggets are a great balance of veterans, youth, great coaching and one borderline unicorn in Nikola Jokic. Playing them at home after facing the Suns will be a serious challenge. Jamal Murray has all the tools to be a Nets killer given his 3-point shot and quick first step, Gary Harris might be the most under-appreciated player in the league and the roster is pretty balanced. The Nets might have a rough go in this one.