NEW YORK (AP) — Deron Williams scored 28 points and even dunked for the first time this season, leading the Brooklyn Nets to a 108-95 victory over the Phoenix Suns on Monday night that extended their home winning streak to nine.
Williams shot 11 of 13 from the field and looks all the way back after ankle problems wrecked his first half of the season. He was two points off his season high and rose above the rim to throw down a dunk that finished off a fourth-quarter fast break started by Andrei Kirilenko's steal.
Joe Johnson added 19 points for the Nets, on their longest home winning streak since winning nine straight from March 15-April 6, 2006.
Playing without Kevin Garnett because of back spasms for the ninth straight game, the Nets continued to thrive playing small ball, making 67.5 percent of their shots in the first half and leading by as much as 23 in the game.
Garnett hasn't played this month and will miss at least two more games before he is re-evaluated Saturday before the Nets leave for a three-game trip. But Mason Plumlee had another strong game in his absence, finishing with 14 points and 11 rebounds in outplaying his brother, Miles.
Markieff Morris scored 18 points and Gerald Green 17 for the Suns, who were seeking a perfect three-game trip against Atlantic Division teams after winning at Boston and Toronto. But they never led and fell 1 ½ games behind Memphis for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Brooklyn coach Jason Kidd talked before the game about how potent the Suns, who scored 121 points at Toronto, could be. But it was the Nets who were quicker up and down the floor in their 16th victory in their last 18 home games.
The Nets made eight of their first 11 shots, hit 70 percent in the first quarter, and led by as much as 14 in the period before taking a 30-20 lead to the second. With a couple of huge dunks by Green to answer some by Shaun Livingston, Phoenix was able to match Brooklyn in first-half highlights but not in baskets.
Williams made all three of his shots in the second quarter, including a layup that gave the Nets a 62-49 lead at the break.
Phoenix cut it to 76-67 on Morris' three-point play, but Johnson and Paul Pierce hit consecutive 3-pointers to start a 14-0 burst and gave the Nets a 90-67 lead with 1:20 remaining in the third quarter.
Williams stopped one last Phoenix attempt to get close in the fourth, nailing a 3-pointer after the Suns had closed within 12.
NOTES: Brooklyn has won the last five meetings. ... New Jersey's Jorge Gutierrez played 7 scoreless minutes on the day he signed a second 10-day contract. He played in only one game during the first deal. ... The game featured two sets of brothers, with the Suns' Morris twins, Markieff and Marcus, and the Plumlees.