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Nets hurt by constantly changing lineups

Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson looks on

Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson looks on during the first half of a game against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center on Nov. 14, 2016 in Los Angeles. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Sean M. Haffey

LOS ANGELES — After the Nets turned the ball over 22 times leading to 35 points by the Clippers in their 32-point blowout win on Monday night, coach Kenny Atkinson admitted the obvious about the fallout his team is experiencing from inconsistent lineups. Part of it is the unavoidable cost of multiple injuries at the point guard position, but also center Brook Lopez was rested for the second time in 10 games against the Clippers.

“We can do a better job,” Atkinson said of the Nets’ ballhandling. “Part of it is cohesiveness with playing a lot of different lineups. But we’ll try to correct some things on film and see if we can improve in that area.”

Power forward Trevor Booker made a similar observation after playing the Clippers regarding the offense as a whole. “The chemistry is going to take some time, especially with people in and out of the lineup,” Booker said. “But at the end of the day, we can always compete.”

Lopez returns to action

With two full days of rest since his previous game Saturday in Phoenix, Lopez returned to the starting lineup against the Lakers Tuesday night at Staples Center. But the entire Nets organization clearly is committed to a plan to maximize the big man’s performance.

“There’s a lot of information coming at us,” Atkinson said. “We consult a lot of people. We consult our doctors, we consult our performance team, we consult our coaches, we consult Brook. It’s a collaborative process and a pretty well thought out plan.”

Buzzer-beaters

Atkinson said rookie point guard Isaiah Whitehead, who rejoined the team on Monday after completing the concussion protocol would play at least a few minutes against the Lakers after being held out of the Clippers game.“I think we have to ease him into the rotation, but he’s worked out the last couple days,” Atkinson said of Whitehead . . . Sean Kilpatrick made his fourth straight start at point guard.

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