Nets guard Cam Thomas drives toward the basket against Wizards guard...

Nets guard Cam Thomas drives toward the basket against Wizards guard Jared Butler during the second half of an NBA game Wednesday in Washington. Credit: AP/Stephanie Scarbrough

WASHINGTON — Heading into overtime Wednesday, Cam Thomas and Trendon Watford relayed a message in the Nets’ huddle: Let’s get kills.

Thomas was locked in a scoring duel with Wizards guard Jordan Poole. But kills — a Nets term for three consecutive stops on defense — was more on his mind. Same with his teammates, after two defensive stops to end regulation.

The Nets started overtime forcing four consecutive misses and Dorian Finney-Smith ended the 122-119 win at Capital One Arena with a steal. It led the Nets (28-45) to their first overtime win after four failed tries this season.

“That’s what our defense and our standards is. We want to get stops at the end of the game,” interim coach Kevin Ollie said. “We didn’t get all the way through the game. But that second quarter, [they scored] 21 points and, in the fourth, we held them to 21 points.”

It allowed Thomas to enjoy winning his battle with Poole. Both scored 38 points and Thomas added seven assists. Poole had eight assists and seven rebounds but missed a potential game-tying three-pointer with 7.2 seconds left in overtime.

Thomas, who didn’t play Monday because of back spasms, scored 24 points in the first half. Poole had 26 in the second. At times, they hunted each other one-on-one with Poole draining a three-pointer in Thomas’ face during the fourth quarter.

Thomas got Poole back in overtime by losing him with a spin dribble and making a 21-foot jumper to put the Nets up 118-112.

“When you both got it going, you want to outdo the person,” Thomas said. “But at the same time, we got to get the win. At the end of the day, that should be back in the mind.”

That’s what happened as the Nets snapped the Wizards’ three-game winning streak. Dennis Schroder made a pair of free throws with nine seconds left to put the Nets up three.

It made up for Schroder missing a potential game-winning three at the end of regulation. Finney-Smith had a similar atonement.

After Poole missed his three, Finney-Smith was fouled grabbing the rebound. With 4.3 seconds left Finney-Smith missed both free throws. Deni Avidja rebounded the second and dribbled up court.

But Finney-Smith poked the ball loose and the Nets ran out the clock. It was just as timely as Nic Claxton blocking Avidja’s layup in regulation with 11.5 seconds left.

“I didn’t have any blocks going into the fourth. I was aware of that,” Claxton said. “Just trying to be there for my teammates.”

Claxton had three blocks to go with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Schroder had 21 points and eight assists while Mikal Bridges added 19 points. Kyle Kuzma had 24 points for the Wizards (14-59) and Marvin Bagley III had 18 points off the bench.

The Nets are enjoying their first winning streak since winning two against the Hawks on Feb. 29 and March 2. But with the Hawks defeating the Trail Blazers Wednesday the Nets remain 5 1⁄2 games back of the final play-in tournament spot with nine remaining.

The Hawks’ magic number to clinch the spot is five.

Poole scored 14 points in the fourth quarter, including a 21-foot shot to put the Wizards up 109-108. After Schroder made a layup, Kuzma made a corner three-pointer.

It was the type of back-and-forth game the Nets have mostly lost this month, until Monday when they pulled away from the Raptors. Now they’ve won two in a row and while Thomas was brilliant, it was once again defense saving the Nets after it’s let them down too often this season.

“We just gotta keep that, keep being engaged as a team to get stops,” said Schroder. “Even if the shots don’t go in….be really focused on the defensive end getting stops and try to win with defense.”

Mask on, mask off for Claxton

Claxton wore a mask in the first quarter to deal with a nasal fracture. But he took it off for good in the second and it didn’t stop him being aggressive for a dunk on Corey Kispert to open the period.

Claxton said the injury came Saturday in the Knicks game when he was elbowed after contesting a shot.

“It’s just been bothering me and I figured something was a little off” Claxton said pregame. “I got an x-ray after the Toronto game so it’s just a small fracture in my nose.”

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