The Jazz missed six of their first seven shots en route to a 12-2 deficit in the first quarter, as Nets center Brook Lopez dominated the Jazz interior defense. Lopez had 11 first-quarter points and helped the Nets to a 28-18 first quarter lead.
While Enes Kanter and Gordon Hayward tried to keep the Jazz in the game, cutting the lead to six in the second quarter, two Joe Johnson three-pointers kept Brooklyn out in front and out of Utah's reach.
A Lopez jumper late in the third quarter put the Nets up 80-56, and the Jazz would draw no closer than 16 thereafter.
Hayward led the Jazz with 22 points and Kanter added 21. Lopez finished with 27 points to lead all scorers.
The Jazz fell to 0-4 on the season, while the Nets improved to 2-2.
- Enes Kanter had a well-rounded offensive game, his 21 points coming on 9-12 shooting and a good mix of interior moves and midrange jumpers. He also had eight rebounds (seven offensive) and did his best to keep the Jazz competitive in the first half.
- Gordon Hayward also had an efficient night, with 22 points on 8-16 shooting to go with five rebounds and four assists. He didn't play much in the fourth quarter, as Ty Corbin was saving him for tomorrow night, or he could have had an even better line.
- ...um...well...I mean...Brandon Rush played, I guess? Though I use the word "played" in only its broadest sense; he was out there for 10 minutes, notched 1 assist, and turned the ball over twice. That was it. Still, it's encouraging to see Rush make his debut, and more minutes and better performances are ahead.
- Turnovers. This morning's Downbeat illustrated the young team's issue with taking care of the ball, and it continued to be a problem on Tuesday night. The Jazz can't afford 20 turnovers and expect to win, especially with most of those coming in the first half. Enes Kanter had seven turnovers by himself, a symptom both of his high usage tonight and Brooklyn's imposing defense.
- Speaking of which, Lopez, Andray Blatche and Mason Plumlee absolutely dominated the paint on both ends of the floor. Derrick Favors looked completely outmatched and far too tentative, and while Kanter's box score numbers look good, Lopez got whatever he wanted on the offensive end. Rudy Gobert fouled out in just 16 minutes (although he did grab 11 boards and two blocks).
- Point guard play is still a huge problem. Jamaal Tinsley and John Lucas III both missed numerous open shots in the first half, and they finished the game with just three assists between them. With Hayward and Alec Burks triggering the offense, the assists aren't as big an issue, but without reliable outside shooting, defenses will continue to pack the paint against Kanter's post-up game and Burks and Hayward's dribble-penetration.
The Jazz head to Boston on Wednesday to face the 0-4 Celtics. Someone will get their first win of the season; let's hope it's the boys in Jazz blue.