clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Warriors vs Nets Key Stat: The Nets offense is evolving

The Warriors and Nets face off in a showdown of two of the highest scoring offenses in the NBA. Yes, that’s not a typo.

NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Golden State Warriors Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

It wasn’t too long ago when the Brooklyn Nets were a wasteland after having their future pillaged by the Boston Celtics. The Nets traded for an aging Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce and mortgaged their future by trading away rights to multiple future first round picks.

It was a gamble that altered both franchises by accelerating the Celtics’ rebuilding project and setting the Nets back several years. The Nets have finished second to last and dead last in the Eastern conference over the last two seasons, respectively. Unfortunately those high draft picks the Nets could have cashed in on materialized in Boston in the form of Jaylen Brown & Jayson Tatum. Otherwise known as “The Jay-Team” per the

The Nets have been forced to be creative with their talent acquisitions, and although they aren’t yet playoff competitive, they are evolving. The Nets are coached by Kenny Atkinson, who was a former Atlanta Hawks assistant coach. Working under the tutelage of Mike Budenholzer , Attkinson is an indirect disciple of the Gregg Popovich school of coaching.

One of the best talents of Popovich was the ability of taking second round picks and less heralded players and fitting them into his system. Attkinson is no Popovich, but he has had success converting some of those lesser players to play above their perceived value.

Pace and Space

So far this season, the Warriors are fifth in the league in PACE at 104.14. While the Brooklyn Nets sit at the top of the league with a PACE of 106.75.

So, what exactly is PACE?

Formula: Minutes per game x ((Team possessions + opponent possessions)/(2x(Team minutes played)/5))

What does this gibberish mean? It represents the average number of possessions by a team each minute and extrapolates that over a full length regulation game. Which translates to the Nets running a very fast offense. We know the Warriors like to get out and run especially on the fast break, so this game will likely run at a frenetic pace.

The Warriors are first in the league in points per game with 117.5, but the Brooklyn Nets are not too far behind at fifth in the NBA with 110.5 points per game. Both teams are also top five in 3-point attempts per game. Overall, the Nets are second in the league in total field goals attempted.

How will this impact the Warriors?

The Warriors will come into this game off the front-end of a road back to back playing the 76ers in Philadelphia the night before. Back to backs always spell tired legs which would in this case be a cause for concern as the Nets like to run. Generally the Warriors excel when teams play at their pace, which is a fast paced game. We should expect to see more minutes by some of the rotation guys the Steve Kerr will save and keep fresh for the game in Brooklyn: Patrick McCaw, Nick Young, and Jordan Bell.

Players to watch out for

The Nets have been struck with the injury bug, unfortunately losing their starting shooting guard Jeremy Lin for the remainder of the season. Recently the Nets also lost their starting point guard D’Angelo Russell to a knee injury and he has just undergone surgery. His timetable for return is unknown at this point. Both players were expected to lead the team and make a big impact this season.

Enter Spencer Dinwiddie.

A relatively unknown player who was a 2014 second round pick by the Detroit Pistons, Dinwiddie bounced around in the developmental league for a few years before getting picked up by the Nets last season. He has seized his opportunity this season, filling the hole in the starting lineup and seemingly doing it better than Russell.

Dinwiddie will look to push the ball and drive early and often. He recently posted career highs against the Jazz, so look for him to try and impress again versus the Warriors.

The Nets are by no reason world beaters, but have reeled off some impressive wins this season. If the Warriors go cold and play visibly tired, the Nets will pounce. Young and hungry for respect, these aren’t the same cellar dweller Brooklyn Nets.

[Stats sourced per]

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Golden State of Mind Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Golden State Warriors news from Golden State of Mind