Three keys for the Nets in the second half

P.J. Carlesimo looks on during a game against

P.J. Carlesimo looks on during a game against the Denver Nuggest. (Feb. 13, 2013) (Credit: David Pokress)

Health

Of the Nets' main starters, Joe Johnson is the only one who hasn't missed at least one game. Deron Williams is working his way back from inflammation in both ankles. Brook Lopez sat out seven games recovering from a foot injury and Gerald Wallace, who battled bruised ribs and a sore ankle, was sidelined for 10 games. The Nets aren't going anywhere if any of their key players aren't healthy.

Settling on a rotation

P.J. Carlesimo knows he's going to have to shorten his rotation soon. When he took over for the fired Avery Johnson, Carlesimo mentioned how he wanted to take a look at a few players so he could settle on their roles and figure out which combinations work best. But as the playoffs near, there's no way he can play 10 to 12 guys a night and still have everyone remain sharp.

Roadblocks

If the Nets are going to finish among the top half in the conference standings, they need to step things up on the road, where they're 12-12. They have 17 road contests left. Between March 18 and April 3, they have eight straight road games in a 17-day span. Their longest remaining homestand is a three-gamer from April 4-9.

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