With a double-double each, Devin Harris (18 points and 11 assists) and Kris Humphries (20 points and 11 rebounds) led the New Jersey Nets to victory over the Chicago Bulls Wednesday night.
It wasn't easy, as the Nets blew a 13-point, fourth quarter lead before pulling it out in the end, when Sasha Vujacic hit a shot with just over five seconds left.
What the game showed us is the importance of not falling behind early.
New Jersey kept the score close throughout the first half and went into halftime down just one point, 47-46.
They then played very well in the third, outscoring Chicago 32-18.
The Nets gave their fans a scare when they allowed the Bulls to fight back at tie the game at 94 in the final seconds.
New Jersey tried to run a play for Brook Lopez that would have allowed him to throw down an alley-oop from Harris, but the pass was too low and got deflected. Fortunately for the Nets, the ball bounced right to Vujacic and he put it in the basket.
Derrick Rose missed a desperation shot at the buzzer, giving New Jersey a 96-94 win and ending their five-game losing streak.
This was easily the best game the Nets have played in some time. They held Chicago to 44 percent shooting while hitting nearly 50 percent of their own shots and out-rebounded the Bulls 39-36.
Their bad habit of playing bad ball for a quarter every game popped up in the fourth, but they were able to hold on thanks to the lead they had built in the third.
They can also still stand to improve their turnovers, as they had 17 in the game.
When the Nets lost to the Bulls less than a week ago, the main cause was their lack of the three-point shooting; in this game, New Jersey shot 42 percent on threes (5-of-12) while Chicago was at 32 percent.
Derrick Favors got his first career start and underwhelmed. He played less than 10 minutes due to foul trouble. On the bright side, he was able to score seven points and grab five rebounds in that limited amount of time.
The team was also able to keep Rose in check for much of the night. He scored 21 points, but had five turnovers and just one assist.
All in all, this was a good win for New Jersey. They beat one of the the top teams in the Eastern Conference and actually outplayed them at times.
They'll have to do this more often before we can get too excited, and they'll have a chance to keep it going Friday night in Washington.