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Red-hot Nets credit turnaround with keeping it ‘about basketball’

CLEVELAND – Before leading his team to a ninth straight win in a 125-117 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday night, Brooklyn Nets coach Jack Vaughn thought what was the key to his team’s recent hot play. Admitted.

“Basketball,” Bourne said before the game. When you step in, it’s about basketball, how you handle each covering each other on the floor, covering each other on the floor, it’s about basketball.”

For many across the league who saw a group of talent go from an emotional rollercoaster of ups and downs to the hottest team in the NBA, it was a noticeable difference.

“From the outside it looks like basketball is the main thing,” Cavaliers coach JB Bickerstaff said before the game.

That wasn’t always the case for the Nets. After an eventful start on the court, Kyrie Irving was criticized for sharing a post on his social media promoting a film containing anti-Semitic ideas, and was later handed an eight-match suspension. received. Steve Nash was quickly sidelined as head coach.

Vaughn says keeping things simple helped the team stay on track.

“I’m a simple person,” Vaughan said after Monday’s game. [off] We kept our members fresh to go to extremes when we played. And that’s kind of the goal, and that way we got a little bit of momentum.

“We’ve simplified the playbook a bit. What we’re doing is simple… let the players play very freely. We’re going to ask the players to play hard. So I think there’s something important there.”

After Nash and the Nets parted ways, he took over as interim head coach on November 1 and became full-time coach a week later. pointed out the shootaround. Before the game against the Washington Wizards, less than a day after Irving’s suspension was finalized, Vaughan spoke with the group and said, “I was as vulnerable as I could be.”

Vaughan’s message was simple.

“I try to be as consistent as possible every day,” he told the team. “And be as honest as possible.”

The simplicity of Bourne’s message and Kevin Durant’s continued MVP-level play is why the Nets completely turned their season around. Their credibility on the floor is palpable, contributing up and down the roster and focused on what’s at hand. It was the Nets’ longest winning streak since the 2005-06 season and his 13th in the last 14 games, putting him 10-1 as of December.

Nets swingman Royce O’Neill said, “We play on both ends and we’re competing hard. Everyone is accountable. We help each other on defense and shoot great offense.” I’m determined and no one is selfish.”

Durant, in particular, said he felt the Nets’ focus had always been there.

After scoring 32 points in Monday’s win, Durant said, “I think we’ve always thought about the ball, to be honest.” I think the outside world, including the [about being focused]It’s true that you don’t have much to talk about outside of the game, so it doesn’t add to our team’s discussion.”

It’s worth noting that Durant, like many within the organization, admitted his dissatisfaction with the overall situation in the wake of both Irving’s suspension and his team’s struggles. Considering that I changed tenors during the season, those days feel like a long time ago.

“Everybody has a platform,” Durant said. “So there’s a lot of voicing about what we do in the locker room, but when they’re not really thinking about anything, I think it’s the noise you hear. But we always “I’m not saying we didn’t struggle, but we were always focused on playing basketball. Other people I think you were looking for something to attach something to or label our team.I know Kylie’s.Maybe what you are saying I feel like we’ve always thought about games.”

Durant said he had to explain the situation to those close to him, but praised Vaughn for the way he simplified things for the group.

“I had a lot of friends who were like, ‘Yo, K, are you okay?'” Durant said. ‘Man, there’s a lot of crazy stuff going on with everyone.’ I was like, ‘Really? It’s not that crazy. I feel like I’m going home. To be honest, the outside is more noisy and has been since day one, but what we did was simplify both ends of the basketball.

“And then we strengthened our roles individually, the coach strengthened our roles and almost every day he strengthened what he needed us to do. I think that was the focus… room.” ‘I think we’ve always stuck with basketball and tried to help keep this thing on track.’

Durant tried to stay focused on how solid he believed his team’s mindset was, but Vaughn said the key was that the group pushed all distractions off the court. admitted that it was

“It’s definitely part of it,” Vaughan said. “And when we came back as a group, we made a point of making a promise to each other about basketball: a job to protect each other and make something about basketball.”

Irving was asked if he agreed with the assessment that the focus had returned to the floor.

After scoring 32, Irving said, “Personally, I think I put myself aside at times.” “Just believe in what we do… I really don’t care about negativity or praise from the outside. I am the best version of myself and base my results on how much I can trust We are focused on each other as a group.”