The Nets’ three-game road trip ended on the sourest of notes Sunday when they suffered a humiliating 149-146 to the lowly Wizards after some last-second breakdowns. They were facing the NBA-best Clippers Tuesday night at Barclays Center, but as much as they might have wanted to turn the page from the embarrassing defensive showing in Washington, coach Steve Nash said that would be a mistake.
"The last few seconds of the game you could throw away," Nash said. "But the rest of it is something we got to learn from. I think there was a mentality that we were going to win, and therefore, we gave away an endless amount of possessions defensively because we felt like we were in control until we weren't. So that lesson has to sink in.
"You have to grow and build on the mistakes we made, especially in a season like this, where we just don't have time to practice. The guys needed a day off after the trip, but you can't just sweep it under the rug. It has to be addressed, and we have to learn from it."
No help is on the way just yet. The Nets recently added shot-blocking center Norvel Pelle, but he hasn’t played in more than a year and hasn’t had a chance to practice with them to prepare.
"It’s probably too soon," Nash said. "But we’ve got a couple practice days coming up where we can get a look at him and have a much better kind of scope of how ready he is and when he could jump in there."
Nash also said the Nets are hoping to mix in some zone defense but haven’t had time to work on it, especially since adding James Harden. "With James here, we’re looking at a new group and trying to get that down before going to zone," Nash said. "We haven’t been able to get to it yet, but that is on the horizon."