Without Kevin Durant, Nets' freefall continues with sixth straight loss

Without Kevin Durant, Nets' freefall continues with sixth straight loss

Remember when the Nets’ biggest problem was that they couldn’t beat elite teams?

Well, now it seems they can’t even beat the not-so-elite teams either. 

Brooklyn (29-22) continues to slide down the Eastern Conference standings with their sixth consecutive loss, this time losing to the Sacramento Kings, 112-101. The Kings snapped their own seven-game losing streak with the win. 

The Nets are currently the sixth seed but hold just a 1.5 game lead over the Charlotte Hornets in seventh, and just two over the surging Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors who are tied for eighth. 

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Brooklyn have now lost three straight on this current road trip and they have dropped 13 of their last 19. This is now the Nets’ longest losing streak for over two years. 

Brooklyn has struggled with injuries this season – they are just 2-7 since Kevin Durant’s injury –  but did have James Harden available, along with Kyrie Irving who suited up for his tenth game of the season.

Harden, who missed one game with hamstring woes and another because of the strained hand — finished with 22 points and 10 assists, while Irving scored 11 of his team-high 26 in the final period. 

Post-game Harden said it wasn’t time to press the panic button just yet. 

“There’s no concern. We don’t have our entire team, and this is happening to us,” he said. “It’s all a process. Obviously, we’re going through a tough stretch where we’re losing. Hopefully, just finish this into the break and hopefully, after the break, we can potentially get our full roster” 

He refuted the notion that the team requires a ‘players only’ meeting to clear the air and try get their season back on track. 

“Na, we’ve done too much talking,” he added. “We just gotta go out there and do it, and do it consistently. We have times where we’re great, and times where we’re really bad. We’ve just gotta find consistency throughout the course of games.” 

Brooklyn’s record against elite competition is just 1-12 this season with the sole victory coming in Chicago in mid-January. They have two more games on this current five-game road stand – at Utah and at Denver, before facing the Celtics at home, the Wizards and the Heat away from home. 

They’re just 15-15 against teams with a record of .500 and above this season, and if Brooklyn is to salvage its season, this run of games will ultimately tell us what these Nets are championship contenders or pretenders. 

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