Nets hold off Lakers’ late rally for 114-105 win
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Joe Johnson scored 23 points and Brook Lopez added 22 off the bench, leading the Brooklyn Nets to a 114-105 victory over the skidding Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night.
Deron Williams had 15 assists and 12 points in his first start since Dec. 19, helping the Nets end a three-game slide midway through their eight-game road trip. It was the first game back for both teams following the All-Star break.
Thaddeus Young had eight points in 12 minutes off the bench in his Nets debut after Thursday's trade that sent Kevin Garnett to Minnesota - where the 2004 NBA MVP and 15-time All-Star spent his first 12 seasons.
Young averaged 14.3 points in 48 starts with the Timberwolves after spending his first seven pro seasons with Philadelphia - two of them as a reserve.
Jeremy Lin scored 11 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter and five others reached double figures for the Lakers, who have dropped seven straight and 16 of 17. The only victory during that stretch was in double overtime against Chicago on Jan. 29 at Staples Center.
Los Angeles center Jordan Hill, who missed the previous five games with a hip flexor strain, came off the bench for the first time this season and had 12 points and 10 rebounds in 29 minutes.
The Nets outscored the Lakers 17-4 over the final 4:20 of the third quarter and led by 22 after Markel Brown's two free throws with 9:22 remaining.
Lin answered with a 17-footer and teammate Nick Young added a 20-footer for his first field goal of the night after missing his first five shots. Those baskets triggered a 19-4 run that sliced Brooklyn's margin to 107-100 with 2:29 to play. But that was as close as the Lakers got, despite holding the Nets to two field goals over the final 8:03.
The Lakers led 57-56 at halftime after shooting 51.1 percent. Alan Anderson and Johnson hit 3-pointers 63 seconds apart to help the Nets open a 67-59 lead with 9:38 left in the third.
Nets: Brooklyn led 34-32 through one quarter after shooting 58.3 percent (14 for 24). The Nets came in leading the NBA with a first-quarter field goal percentage of 49.5. ... Young, the 12th overall pick in the 2007 draft by the 76ers, was involved in a three-team trade last August in which Kevin Love was sent from Minnesota to Cleveland. ... The Nets lost 11 straight to the Lakers before beating them 108-102 in their previous meeting last Feb. 23, with 30 points from Williams. ... G Jarrett Jack missed the game because of a sore left hamstring, leaving F Mason Plumlee and Anderson as the only players to appear in all 53 games with the club this season.
Lakers: A moment of silence was observed for 17-year NBA veteran Jerome Kersey, who played 70 games with the Lakers in 1996-97 - Kobe Bryant's rookie season. Kersey died Wednesday at age 52 due to a blood clot. ... Byron Scott's first head coaching job in the NBA was with the Nets, who were 26-56 in his inaugural season but made it to the NBA Finals the next two years. They were swept by the Lakers in 2002 and lost to San Antonio in six games in 2003. ... The Lakers have a rematch with the Nets on March 29 in Brooklyn.
Nets: At Denver on Monday.
Lakers: Host Boston on Sunday.
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