(Sports Network) - The struggling New Jersey Nets kick off a four-game road
trip in the Rockies tonight against the Denver Nuggets.
The Nets have dropped eight of nine since winning their season opener with the
latest defeat coming Monday in Newark when Josh Smith scored 26 points and the
Atlanta Hawks beat New Jersey for the third time this season, holding on for a
Anthony Morrow scored 20 points to lead New Jersey. Rookie MarShon Brooks had
19 points and 10 rebounds and Deron Williams scored 15 with 14 assists, but
the Nets fell to 2-8 this season.
Two of those losses came to Atlanta last month. Perhaps tired of losing to the
same team, Nets coach Avery Johnson struggled to spit out the word he wanted
to describe his team's start Monday night. New Jersey shot just 29.4 percent
in the first quarter and trailed by as many as 16.
"We just got off to such a lethargic start," said Johnson, tripping over the
word lethargic. "That's how bad it was," he said. "I can't even pronounce the
After tonight the Nets, who are 2-4 as the visitor on the year, will continue
their swing with visits to Phoenix, Utah and the LA Clippers.
The Nuggets, meanwhile, have dropped two in a row, including the opener of a
four-game homestand on Monday when Carl Landry had 21 points and Chris Kaman
added 20 points and seven rebounds as the New Orleans Hornets snapped a six-
game losing streak with a 94-81 win at the Pepsi Center.
Danilo Gallinari, who had scored 20 points in four of his past five games
coming in, and Ty Lawson poured in 15 points apiece for the Nuggets, who have
dropped the consecutive contests after winning four in a row.
"It's a tough home loss, you don't like losing them," Nuggets head coach
George Karl said. "I think you're seeing a lot of these games in the lockout
type of year that one team kind of comes in and does all the right things and
the other team is searching and we didn't find many answers."
Denver, which is 4-1 at Pepsi Center, will finish its residency with games
against Miami and Utah.
The Nuggets have won four straight over New Jersey in Denver and have lost
back-to-back home games just twice over the past four seasons.
The Sports Network