For the Nets, it was the first time that they saw their new Big Three on the court together, and each produced big games. Alongside Irving’s 37 points, Nets forward Kevin Durant finished with a team high 38 points, and Nets guard James Harden dropped 21 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds in the losing effort.
Despite the loss, the Nets saw a lot of positives, especially with how the Big Three worked with one another.
“It felt right,” Durant said of the three superstars playing together, according to ESPN’s Malika Andrews. “Felt perfect, felt like we belong together. It felt like just joining together is going to be fun. It was a tough start, especially it was an up-and-down game for us.”
Still, the Nets couldn’t overcome some of their issues, and couldn’t cool off a hot-shooting Collin Sexton, who dropped 42 points on 16-for-29 shooting to fuel the Cavs.
“We had breakdowns all over the place,” Nets coach Steve Nash said. “So we’ve got a lot of work to do. We know that. We know we have a very offensive team right now, so we have to find ways to defend, to get connected, to be on the same page.”
“Always playing the game that I love, I am grateful,” Irving said. “I never take it for granted. Then also to be playing with Kevin Durant, James Harden, just those names alone right now, just were having some fun.”
The Nets will have a chance to turn things around on Friday, when they play the Cavaliers again.