Seth Curry, Andre Drummond invaluable in early days with Nets

How key was prying Andre Drummond and Seth Curry out of Philadelphia in the James Harden-Ben Simmons swap? The pair haven’t just started since the trade went down, but they’ve posted the best plus-minus stats on the whole Nets roster. 

Drummond is a plus-34 with Curry right behind at plus-33 in five starts coming into Monday’s tilt versus Toronto, both having filled glaring needs. 

The floor-spacing Curry is averaging 19.2 points on 47.4 percent shooting from deep, while Drummond is posting a double-double (11.2 points, 11.0 boards) in just 22 minutes. Both have seemed to fit in seamlessly. 

“Yeah, I hope my smile can answer that question,” Kyrie Irving said. “When you play with guys that are coming off the ball, being very selfless and putting their body on the line and then just thinking the game, it just makes my job a lot easier to go out there and just lead the offense as best I can as the point guard. 

Nets
Andre Drummond (left) and Seth Curry (right) own the two best plus-minus marks on the Nets since joining the team.
Jason Szenes

“But even just thinking like that, Bruce [Brown] played point guard, Seth played point guard, and we’re just all interchangeable down the stretch. And we just showed our depth and showed our resilience.” 


Brown has looked like a different man since the trade deadline. The Nets waived DeAndre’ Bembry to complete the Simmons deal, and then Jevon Carter to sign Goran Dragic. Whether it’s on-court opportunity or job stability, Brown has been thriving. He’s averaging 13.2 points and 5.8 rebounds on .518 shooting overall and .500 from deep in his last six games. 

Bruce Brown
Bruce Brown
Corey Sipkin

As expected Kevin Durant (left MCL sprain) has been ruled out vs. Toronto. Joe Harris (left ankle surgery), Simmons (return to competition reconditioning) and Irving (ineligible) are out Monday as well. 


The Nets did give up 29 points to Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo on Saturday, but they held him to 8 of 20 shooting with four turnovers. It took a team effort to slow him down, but James Johnson was the biggest part of that effort. And if the teams meet in the postseason, it’s worth noting that Johnson did as good a job as any in dealing with the Greek Freak this regular season. 

In three meetings, Johnson was Brooklyn’s most effective defender against Antetokounmpo. He’s spent 10:03 guarding the star spanning 56 partial possessions, holding him to 17 points on .400 shooting. 

For perspective, Antetokounmpo has shot .667 against LaMarcus Aldridge, .583 vs. Nic Claxton and .571 matched up with Blake Griffin. 

Antetokounmpo is .500 vs. Durant, and .455 against Drummond (with one of their two matchups coming when the Drummond was still with Philadelphia).


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