The Nets defense is tested by Stephen Curry, the Warriors


The Nets left home for a season-long, six-game road trip in fourth place and basically returned to first place. Their return to Barclays is the best team in the league, clashing with Golden State on Tuesday.

The Nets put together a 5-1 road trip, though they lost to the only top team they played (Chicago). Their offense job is in progress, as they get their toughest test against an 11-2 Warriors team that leads the league in net rating, defensive rating and of course record.

“We have to be weak on the defensive every night. There’s still a long way to go on both ends of the floor, but we’re showing signs of improvement and moving in the right direction,” said Steve Nash, whose job as a Warriors consultant paved the way for the Nets’ job.

“Golden State, they have put themselves ahead of the pack across the league. They play good basketball, find a group that really fits together, has a really strong identity. You can see the positive energy coming out of that group. This is a big challenge for us. ”

Kevin Durant won consecutive Finals MVPs with Golden State and was going to third place in 2019 when he shattered his Achilles.

Now that Durant – who looks like an early-season MVP leader – is reducing both his sore right shoulder and his reunion with Steph Curry & Co., he is hailed as the best team in the NBA but Tuesday’s debate as a finals preview is premature.

Kevin Durant and the Nets face the Warriors at the Barclays Center on Tuesday.
NBAE by Getty Images

“It’s just another game,” Durant said. “It’s 15 games in a season. Obviously they’re the best team in the league, and they’re playing at an elite level, but it’s a regular-season game.

“We obviously want to go out there and win in front of our home crowd, but we’re not going to put pressure on ourselves and call it finals adjustment. We don’t see it that way.

The Nets have won eight of nine and are only 10 percentage points behind Washington at 10-4. And he did this without a second from Kyrie Irving. But after Monday’s practice, Warriors coach Steve Kerr said he was not surprised by the slightest.

“No, when you have Kevin Durant and James Harden on the same team, that team is great. They’re talented, and they’ve got a great leader in Steve Nash and a good vibe about his team,” Kerr said.

Even Warriors coach Durant “looks like the same guy.

But while the Nets are competing for a good mark in the East, the Warriors are the best in the league.

“He’s playing well,” Harden said. “We know who we’re playing against and Steph is playing at a high level now. So it will be a tough match.

Returning after such a long road trip is the task of avoiding mental depression.

“Obviously, this is another challenge for the Warriors and how they play together as a team,” Patty Mills said. “Our security will be tested, our communication will be tested. But the biggest challenge for us is to see where we are and where we want to go. So looking forward to it. ”

Facing Curry – Closing the NBA’s all-time 3-point record – the Nets need to develop solidarity in defense, learn from each other and where help comes from. And as opposed to the Warriors defense, they have to keep playing fast and have to get into their sets very quickly

“Both ends, honestly – defensively and offensively, we’re coming together. And it feels good. It feels more fluid. It feels like it has to,” Harden said. “Honestly, we have a long way to go and we’re still building on it. But it’s just confidence and knowing each other a little bit helps us a lot.

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