The Brooklyn Nets are currently staring down the barrel of an 0-3 hole to the Boston Celtics in the first round of their Eastern Conference playoff series.
Nothing the Nets have tried up to this point has worked. Kevin Durant has struggled. Kyrie Irving has been inconstant. Even Blake Griffin having the game of his life wasn’t enough to take down Boston.
Following his team’s most recent defeat on Saturday, Nets head coach Steve Nash got brutally honest about his team’s struggles.
His somber tone largely spoke for itself:
“Kyrie’s fasting, and Kevin has had to play 40-plus minutes for five, six weeks after missing six, seven weeks,” Nash said.
“We needed him to play 40 minutes (per night) or we wouldn’t be in the playoffs … So, I’m sure that’s taken a big toll on Kevin. He’s carried a huge burden for us for weeks on end — Kyrie as well since he’s been playing at home and on the road.”
The fasting, in particular, seems to be a point of concern for Nash.
“Fasting, it can’t be easy,” Nash said. “I go play tennis and I haven’t eaten, I feel like I’m gonna fall over, so I can imagine how he feels in an NBA playoff game.
“So, I commend how hard he plays considering and how much minutes they’ve both had to endure for us to be in this position with all the injuries we’ve had this year and all the interruptions. So, I feel for them. I feel for those guys.”
Durant refused to blame fatigue for his issues.
Kevin Durant on his energy: “I don’t think fatigue set in. I feel good playing.” pic.twitter.com/nOTj5CFPcc
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) April 24, 2022
“Nah, I don’t think fatigue has set in,” Durant said. “I feel good playing. I’m not winded. My body doesn’t hurt. I wouldn’t blame it on that.”
It will be interesting to see how the Nets proceed from here. No team has ever come back from being down 0-3 in an NBA playoff series. And this group, whether they’ll admit it or not, is clearly physically and mentally worn down. They’ve been involved in a lot of drama.
Clearly this group, coaching staff included, doesn’t work as presently constructed.
Paige kept it real. https://t.co/931wgEJRr3
— Game 7 (@game7__) April 24, 2022
Will they be able to figure out a way to right the ship over the summer?
Time will tell.