NEW ORLEANS — The Nets’ bench had nowhere to go but up Saturday night.
After a collective two-point performance in Friday’s loss in Dallas, Nets reserves scored 24 points in Saturday night’s 105-103 loss to the Pelicans at Smoothie King Center.
Shane Larkin had 13 points and six assists. Thomas Robinson scored eight points and Bojan Bogdanovic had three.
On Friday night in Dallas, Andrea Bargnani had the lone bench basket, a jumper early in the fourth quarter. After that game, interim coach Tony Brown had some choice words for his underperforming bench squad.
“They know,” he said. “I don’t harp on it every night, but I felt like I had to say something to let them know that I’m looking for something. Don’t get comfortable if you think you’re going to consistently get your minutes. That’s not going to happen. I’ll make some changes. Go somewhere else. But it has to be stated. It was obvious.”
As a reminder on how important bench scoring can be: Also Friday, the Boston Celtics’ reserves combined for 62 points in a win over Orlando.
New Orleans All-Star big man Anthony Davis was cleared to play just before game time following testing by a league representative under the NBA’s concussion protocol. Davis, who missed Thursday’s game after suffering a concussion Monday, had 20 points and 16 rebounds in 40:19.
All of Davis’ points came in the second half. He was 0-for-9 in the first half. But the Pelicans were just happy to have their franchise player back on the court.
‘’He passed [the concussion tests] with flying colors,’’ Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said. ‘’I think it’s great what the NBA does because they take care of that. It’s not on us, it’s on the NBA.”