In what is becoming all too common of an occurrence, the New Jersey Nets dug a huge early hole only to put together a fantastic rally that wasn't quite enough to pull out the victory. This time around it was the Los Angeles Clippers that came out on top with the 101-91 victory Monday afternoon at the Staples Center.
The Nets lost three-of-four on their West Coast trip and are now just 3-11 on the season, second worst record in the NBA.
Blake Griffin set the tone for what turned out to be a physical contest start to finish and it was a 16-0 run in the first quarter -- 11 by Caron Butler -- that proved to be too much for the Nets to overcome. New Jersey was able to tie the game with a 15-2 run of their own late in the fourth quarter, but couldn't ever get over the hump.
Rookie MarShon Brooks was the Nets high scorer with 19 points and added eight rebounds. Deron Williams had 14 points but once again struggled with his shot, hitting on just five-of-15 from the field.
The star of the game for New Jersey, veteran forward Shelden Williams, scored just eight points, but was willing to go toe-to-toe with Griffin late in the game.
Following their four game Western swing, the Nets return for three straight in New Jersey starting with the Golden State Warriors Wednesday night at The Prudential Center.