When you’re mired in a nine-game losing streak, as the Nets are, you take your good fortune where you find it. They did that at the end of two recent blowout losses when forward Quincy Acy, who is on a 10-day contract that expires Jan. 20, stepped on the court and made coach Kenny Atkinson take notice.
Acy scored four points in just over a minute at the end of a loss to Atlanta last Tuesday, which was his first day with the Nets. He didn’t play in a close loss to New Orleans, but on Friday night in Toronto, he scored nine points in five minutes. In those two brief outings, he is 4-for-4 from the field, including two three-pointers, and has shown energy and toughness.
After the Nets’ loss to the Raptors, Acy was the silver lining in his coach’s eyes. “He looked good tonight,” Atkinson said. “He’s got some pop, and he’s aggressive. You can tell he’s a competitor, and that’s the book on him. Those are the type of guys we want in here. He’s been fantastic since he’s been here, attitude. I just like his aggressiveness and competitiveness.”
In four previous seasons, Acy played for Toronto, Sacramento and the Knicks before a six-game stint with Dallas this season and then a trip to the D-League Texas Legends. No team offers greater opportunity than the Nets, whose 8-31 record is the worst in the NBA, so Acy counted his blessings when they acquired him.
“I’m happy to be here,” he said. “I’m just taking it one day at a time, and whenever my number is called, I’m going to be ready. That’s been the story of my whole career. I’m not up here trying to outdo anything. If I get on the court, I’m going to prove my worth.
“Until then, I’m going to prove my worth off the court. I think they’re probably taking a bigger look at how I am as a professional off the court because they probably know what I can do on the court.”
The Nets have five games in the first eight days of Acy’s contract, which means there is very little practice time, but he said veterans Jeremy Lin and Randy Foye have helped prepare him.
If he plays Sunday night against Houston at Barclays Center, it likely will be in a situation in which the Nets face a big deficit against one of the NBA’s elite teams. But given what he has been through the past four-plus seasons, Acy truly values the opportunity.
“It was a surreal feeling to be back [in the NBA],” he said of his first appearance for the Nets against the Hawks. “I know how hard I’ve worked, and I keep waiting for my opportunity.”
After an even stronger showing against the Raptors, he said, “That’s just me. It’s a product of my journey and part of who I am. I’m not given much, but whenever I’m given it, I make the most of it. Hopefully, it can turn into more, but if not, then I’m going to give my heart out for however long I’m out there.”