Today’s Brooklyn Nets news features head coach Kenny Atkinson and rookie Jarrett Allen talking his role with the team.
As the Nets prepare to face the Orlando Magic in a rematch later this evening, they’ll look to contain Nikola Vucevic. The Magic’s center had a career-game in the two teams’ last matchup this past Friday.
Brooklyn came out with a win, but Vucevic scored 41 points along the way, from all over the floor. Since the season started, it’s big men in the post who’ve posed the biggest challenge for the Nets defensively.
Forward Trevor Booker told The New York Post it’s their biggest weakness, though they remain positive they can adapt.
“They’re eating us up right now, we’re living with it right now. But we’ll watch film, and see how we can adjust.”
The team and Jarrett Allen alike feel that he’s capable of containing Vucevic more now, after such a strong performance in between.
The Nets rookie had 4 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 blocks (most importantly) in a win over the Atlanta Hawks Sunday.
“All I want to do is run around, block shots and get some dunks. That’s my role right now, and if I can stick to that, we have a good chance of winning.”
Head coach Kenny Atkinson commended the rookie, who’s shown some defensive foundations in just two appearances for the team.
“I think there’s two things: (Allen’s) got the rim protection and I really think — and this is rare for a 7-foot guy — he can switch onto smalls. He’s done it a couple times already.”
For Allen, his confidence grows with each performance, and after each test of his skill against talented bigs.
“Just anybody having a good game, you’re going to get more confidence. But me being a rookie, seeing that I got four blocked shots, that’s like me playing against Vucevic the last game. Just knowing I can play with him is all a confidence boost.”
The rookie will likely see more minutes in tonight’s matchup, as starting center Timofey Mozgov was torched any time he faced Vucevic on the floor.
Tonight’s game will be held in Orlando, at the Amway Center. Tip-off is at 7:00 PM EST.