Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson shows off his confidence in Nic Claxton after Saturday night’s loss to Milwaukee.
The Brooklyn Nets continued their recent struggles this past Saturday night with a 117-97 loss to the first-place Milwaukee Bucks. It’s their third consecutive defeat, as Brooklyn now sits in eighth place in the Eastern Conference with a record of 18-23.
In the midst of the loss, the Nets received production from Kyrie Irving (17 points), Jarrett Allen (10 boards), and 20-year-old rookie Nic Claxton. The latter dropped a career-high 14 points and additionally snatched six rebounds.
After the game, head coach Kenny Atkinson portrayed confidence in the type of player Claxton will soon become.
Nic Claxton was a bright spot for the #Nets w/ a career-high 14 points, six boards and three blocks. Atkinson: “Once he gets stronger, he’s going to be a heck of a player for us. He’s a competitor, a high-level competitor. We’re really bullish on him.”
— Brian Lewis (@NYPost_Lewis) January 19, 2020
Claxton has only appeared in 11 games for the Nets thus far, coming off the bench in each one of them. The young forward is averaging 3.7 points, 2.5 rebounds, and 1.1 assists on 52.9% shooting from the field. He sees the floor for an average of 12.6 minutes per game.
Brooklyn originally selected Claxton in the second round (No. 31 overall) of last June’s NBA Draft. He previously portrayed his talents for the University of Georgia from 2017-19.
Claxton has also spent time with the Long Island Nets, Brooklyn’s G League affiliate. In three games (one start) for them this year, he’s averaged 11.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 1.0 assist on 58.3% shooting through 13.9 minutes played per game.
It’ll be interesting to see if Claxton’s playing time for Brooklyn increases, especially since Atkinson possesses a high level of confidence in him.
The Nets’ next matchup will be with the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday. Tip-off is set to take place at 3:00 p.m. ET at the Barclays Center.