How do you stop the high-flying Clippers?

Deron Williams and Brook Lopez of the Nets

Deron Williams and Brook Lopez of the Nets look on late in a game against the Atlanta Hawks. (March 17, 2013) (Credit: Jim McIsaac)

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LOS ANGELES -- It shouldn't have been all that hard to look at the Staples Center court and determine the high-flying team.

"We don't really throw lobs,'' the Nets' Deron Williams said before Saturday night's 101-95 loss to the Clippers. "I think I've thrown like two lobs this whole season.''

But the team the Nets were playing surely does, and that was one of their biggest concerns against the Clippers in the third of eight consecutive road games. The Clippers have been hyped with the whole "Lob City'' thing, which features super-dunkers Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan.

The Nets' Reggie Evans played with the Clippers last season and understands how much those dunks can enliventhe crowd, creating an extremely tough environment.

"With my Clippers, fellas, it was so many to where I almost can't comment,'' Evans said. "It's like, 'Whoa.' You've just got to gather yourself and you may hit your teammates when you are on the bench, like when Blake did a couple of dunks on [the Lakers' Pau Gasol]. To see Andruw Bynum's reaction . . . ''

There's been a lot of debate in recent weeks about whether defenders should step out of the way of these freight-train dunk attempts, such as the ones by LeBron James and Jordan that have become YouTube sensations. Is it better to get out of the way? Or should that old credo -- play defense no matter what -- be heeded?

People thought Pistons guard Brandon Knight made a mistake by trying to get in Jordan's way and defend the play. He's been picked on heavily since his famed attempt. Same goes for Jason Terry, who was posterized on a nasty James alley-oop last Monday.

"Man, you've just got to know your limitations and know who's there,'' Williams said before the game. "That situation, ain't no winning that. Ain't no winning that. You can't take a charge. Jason Terry, the other day he got put in the blender because he went from this side to this side and turned around. And he just happened to be there. You really can't do nothing about that one.''

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban chimed in earlier in the week, taking Terry's side.

"More credit for Jet. I'm of the opposite category,'' Cuban said. "It's the gutless who worry about what they look like in a poster and it's the real guys, the real players, who have no problem playing the game.

"Like I said before, I give credit to Brandon Knight, I give credit to Jet. You do your job and not care about the posters or the tweets. Those are the kind of guys teams want.''

But Williams said it's not all that easy.

"You try, but I mean, what are you going to do?'' he said. "You are just going to get an 'and-one.' So you are going to put him on the line and give him a chance for a free throw.''

That's the last thing they wanted to do against the Clippers, which is why those alley-oops were one of the Nets' main worries.

"Their lobs get their whole team going, gives them a lot of excitement -- if a man goes down,'' Williams said before the game with a smile. "So it's going to be a big test for us, stopping their transition, their lobs, pick-and-roll situations. The weak-side help has to be there for us to have success.''

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