Despite the rebounding problems the Nets ran into against the Knicks in a blowout loss Monday at Madison Square Garden, coach Kenny Atkinson made no changes to his starting lineup against the Pistons Wednesday night at Barclays Center. There was some thought power forward Jared Dudley might head to the bench in favor of Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, who started last season, or even Ed Davis, but Dudley got the call for the eighth straight game despite a scoreless outing against the Knicks.
Hollis-Jefferson missed the preseason and the regular-season opener while recovering from a strained adductor and missed two more games after the birth of his son. But he played a season-high 27 minutes against the Knicks, totaling 16 points and seven rebounds.
Asked if Hollis-Jefferson might be ready to regain his starting job, Atkinson said, “We’ll see. That was a good run for him the other night with him getting his rhythm. We do have to realize he has been out a long time. It’s not like he was out a week.
“It’s just going to be a feel. But it was good that Rondae had a good game the other night.”
Focus is on rebounding
After reviewing the loss to the Knicks in which the Nets were outrebounded 53-32 and gave up 16 offensive rebounds, Atkinson said, “Definitely got to rebound better. There’s no doubt about it. That’s our defensive focus lately, especially after the last game. The Knicks grabbed 40 percent of their misses, which is double the league average.” . . . Coming off a sprained ankle, Allen Crabbe was shooting just 27.1 percent from the field and an almost unbelievable 18.8 percent on two-point shots before facing the Pistons. “He’s getting a rhythm,” Atkinson said. “He’s sometimes hesitating or sometimes rushing a shot, too. When you re-watch the games, you see it. I do see it improving. I think he needs more real NBA game minutes, and he’ll get back to where he should be.”