The Brooklyn Nets hosted the Boston Celtics on Friday night looking to bounce back from a loss at TD Garden on March 7. The Nets cruised against their Atlantic Division rivals, giving the starters the fourth quarter off en route to a 114-98 win.
The victory made it 11 straight wins at Barclays Center for the Nets, the fourth-longest such streak in franchise history. The record is 13 set back in 2002 when Jason Kidd was the point guard.
Joe Johnson canned six three-pointers on his way to a team-high 27 points, 16 of which came in the third quarter. The Nets hit nine of 17 from behind the arc in stark contrast to their 4-of-30 ineptitude last time against Boston. Mason Plumlee showed out with 18 points and three steals, and Brooklyn outscored Boston 62-30 in the paint.
Avery Bradley caught fire in the second quarter to give him 23 first-half points, and he tied a career-high with 28 points. Rajon Rondo handed out a dozen assists and scored a dozen points in another losing effort.
The Nets won each of the first three quarters by six points, and Boston never threatened in the fourth.
Brooklyn moves just a game behind the Chicago Bulls for the fourth seed after they fell on the road to the Indiana Pacers. The Nets start a three-game road trip with the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday.
The Celtics fall to 24 games under .500 and have lost seven of their last 10. They have a ton of time off before Wednesday's game against the Toronto Raptors at home, and the Nets will actually be rooting for Boston to beat the division leaders that night.