Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sport
2013-14 Statistics: 22.6 MPG, 9.9 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 1.1 APG, 1.08 SPG, 0.23 BPG, 14.6 PER
Andray Blatche has excelled in his role as Brooklyn's backup center, and he's elevated his game since the injury to Brook Lopez.
Against the Los Angeles Clippers, in 34 minutes of action, Blatche shot 8-of-11 from the field, grabbed eight boards, picked up two assists and finished the night with 19 points. Against the Charlotte Bobcats, Blatche was the Nets' leading scorer with 25 points on 11-of-14 shooting.
Blatche has matured this season, as well. After the 95-91 loss to the Bobcats, he had the following to say regarding Brooklyn's defense, via ESPN.
Fifty-two points in the paint is unacceptable. Thirty-plus points in a quarter is unacceptable. It's our song all season. We keep saying it's early, but until we buckle down on defense, it's going to be the same results. We've got to take pride because it's embarrassing. It's real embarrassing.
Blatche may not be a force defensively, and he may not protect the rim as well as Lopez does, but the effort has been there all year from him. The Nets can depend on him leaving his all on the court.