Bill Clinton was in the house at Barclays Center on Monday night, sitting courtside with Bucks co-owner Marc Lasry and watching a pair of winless teams duke it out.
The former president is one of the few who actually wanted to be there, but at least he didn't have to pony up the cash to catch the late-game ineptitude that cost the Nets a chance to turn around their disappointing start to the season.
Even with old friend Jason Kidd in town, the Nets played in front of their smallest home crowd (12,576) since moving to Brooklyn in 2012 and lost to the Bucks, 103-96, because of a game-ending 9-0 run and an inability to hit a clutch shot late.
"It's disappointing," Shane Larkin said. "Coming down from I think 11 and having to fight all the way back in the game and then get it back to two at one point and not be able to execute down the stretch . . . To put that much effort, that much fight into the game and not be able to pull it out, it's definitely disappointing."
Brook Lopez was powerless to do anything about it, given that he spent 4:12 on the bench down the stretch after picking up his fifth foul.
The score was tied at 92 when Lopez checked out of the game with 4:44 remaining. The Nets (0-4) actually took the lead twice -- the second time on Larkin's runner -- before falling behind for good at 98-96 on Khris Middleton's fallaway jumper with 1:13 remaining.
Lionel Hollins said he didn't feel an urgent need to put Lopez, who led the Nets with 18 points and nine rebounds, back on the floor.
"Not really," Hollins said. "I mean, you look at the clock every time down the court to see what it is. I thought maybe when we put him back in that he would be able to do something, but you know how it went."
Lopez, who finally checked back in for Larkin with 31.7 seconds remaining, was perplexed at the call that whistled him for his fifth foul. He also was diplomatic when asked if he thought he should have been inserted earlier.
"It's a tough call," Lopez said. "I thought the team was doing pretty well, you know? We were making plays. It's tough. Going in too early, I might have picked up another foul, messed things up. So they went with that and I was fine with that."
The Nets misfired on their final four shots in the last 2:45 and turned the ball over twice, coming up short on a pair of failed floaters by Jarrett Jack on plays drawn up after timeouts.
Joe Johnson said he was the primary option on the final sequences, but the Bucks devised a plan to keep him blanketed and "J.Kidd wouldn't let me touch the ball, " Johnson said.
Yes, Kidd found a way to stick it to the Nets yet again, leaving town with his team's first victory of the season while the Nets search for answers on how to put a winning effort together.
"I thought we played decent," Johnson said. "I thought we played well enough to win. Just down the stretch, we couldn't get stops when we needed them. They executed their plays, whether they were shooting free throws or almost getting layups. It was tough for us. We were coming down, grinding, offensively, trying to get the best shot available. Had some great looks, missed them. That's pretty much it."