Pierce scores 18, Nets rebound in rout of Nuggets

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 28, 2014 at 1:25 am •  Published: February 28, 2014
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DENVER (AP) — The Brooklyn Nets didn't take long to put their worst loss in more than 10 years behind them.

Paul Pierce scored 18 points and the Nets rebounded from a 44-point loss the night before by routing the slumping Denver Nuggets 112-89 on Thursday night.

"We looked fresh after the back-to-back," Nets coach Jason Kidd said. "Normally, we don't look fresh. The guys were getting stops and we were getting easy baskets. We were sharing the ball, multiple guys were touching the ball, it wasn't one guy just taking it and shooting it. Guys were creating movement and there was a lot of trust offensively."

Joe Johnson, Marcus Thornton, and Mason Plumlee each added 10 points for the Nets, who snapped a six-game losing streak in Denver. The Nets hadn't won in the Mile High City since a 112-102 victory on Jan. 27, 2007.

Johnson said a stern talking to from Kidd in the wake of the team's blowout loss in Portland made an impact.

"Jason is great," Johnson said. "He chewed us out about last night, about giving a poor performance defensively and not moving the ball offensively. As you all see tonight, we had a different attitude."

Randy Foye had 15 points to lead Denver, which has lost four in a row and nine of 10.

Brooklyn's 7-foot center Jason Collins, the NBA's first openly gay player appearing in his third game since being signed to a 10-day contract, was given a round of applause from the crowd when he entered the game for the first time with 8:02 left.

Collins, who finished with three points, met after the game with the family of Wyoming college student Matthew Shephard, who was tortured and murdered in 1998 because he was gay.

Collins wears his No. 98 jersey in Shepard's honor, and he said during a pregame news conference that the chance to meet Dennis and Judy Shepard was "one of those cool treats in life."

The Nets were coming off a 124-80 loss at Portland the night before, their biggest loss since a 47-point defeat to Memphis on Dec. 13, 2003. But they quickly put that behind them with a runaway win of their own in a game in which they never trailed.

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