The New Jersey Nets may have come home from their four-game West coast road trip with just one victory, but they also bring with them the knowledge that they very well could have been 4-0.
Avery Johnson and his players have a busy week ahead that isn't any easier just because they are back on the East coast. The Nets will book-end their four games this week at the Prudential Center in Newark.
New Jersey kicks off the week on Tuesday against the Atlanta Hawks (8-5), who are led by Joe Johnson's 18.5 points per game. The Hawks got off to a scorching 6-0 start before losing five of their next seven, including Saturday night's 98-93 setback to the Dallas Mavericks.
Once they are done with the Hawks, the Nets head up 95 to take on the Boston Celtics (9-4). The Big Three will welcome New Jersey to Boston on Wednesday. Like the Hawks, the Celtics have been struggling lately, dropping two in a row to the Kevin Durant-less Oklahoma City Thunder and Toronto Raptors.
The Nets get a couple days off before taking on Elton Brand (15.9 ppg) and the Philadelphia 76ers (3-10) on Saturday. The Sixers have struggled early on in the season with separate losing streaks of four and five games.
The week wraps up Sunday back in Newark against the Portland Trailblazers (8-6). Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge carry the load for the Blazers with a combined 36.5 points per game. Portland opened the season 3-0, but have been a game under .500 since.
Nets center Brook Lopez (17.2 ppg.) will need to shake off missing the potential game-tying layup Saturday night against the Denver Nuggets. Point guard Devin Harris struggled on New Jersey's road trip, averaging just over 12 points per game while shooting less than 38 percent from the floor.
Here are the rest of the Nets stats.