Yi, Nets thrash TimberwolvesDec 6, 2008 - 4:18 AM By Joe Rizzo PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Ticker) -- The sharp-shooting New Jersey Nets went from letdown to beatdown.
Yi Jianlian led a long-range assault Friday with four 3-pointers en route to 16 points to lead seven players in double figures as the Nets rebounded from an embarrassing home loss with a 113-84 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The margin of victory was the largest this season for the Nets, who allowed a season-low in points.
"Not that I think we're going to sell our guys that if you defend, you're going to get 50 percent from 3-point range," Nets coach Lawrence Frank said. "That would be nice from a marketing standpoint, but that's sometimes how you get yourself going."
Vince Carter chipped in 18 points for New Jersey, which was 14-of-28 from beyond the arc in winning for the fourth time in five games. Its 3-point attempts and conversions both were season highs.
"We came out aggressive from the jump ball tonight," Carter said. "I'll take that (shooting percentage) any day. It's tough to guard a team like that."
The Nets, who received 11 points and 10 rebounds from rookie Brook Lopez, have won eight of their last 11 games after opening the season 2-5.
One of those defeats came here Wednesday against the Washington Wizards, who entered the contest 2-13. New Jersey was coming off 3-1 Western swing.
"We said whoever we play next has to pay," Lopez said. "Actually, Vince said it and we all agreed with it."
"I'd be lying if I said last game wasn't some kind of motivation for us," said the Nets forward Jarvis Hayes, who finished with 14 points and was 6-of-9 from the floor, including 2-of-4 from beyond the arc.
Randy Foye scored 20 points and Al Jefferson added 17 and 12 rebounds as the Timberwolves lost their fourth straight and fell to 4-14. Minnesota, with forward Mike Miller sidelined with a bad ankle, went winless on a three-game road trip.
"They played a great game and hit a lot of threes," Foye said. "It's tough because they have a lot of jump-shooters. It's hard when they're getting three every time down the court."
Carter hit a 16-foot jumper with 7:28 left in the first quarter to give the Nets the lead for good at 11-10 and spark a 15-3 run. Yi had a pair of 3-pointers and Devin Harris had one from long range in the burst, which gave New Jersey a 24-13 edge with 2:38 remaining.
Carter made a 19-footer for the final bucket of the first quarter and Hayes began the second with a 28-foot bomb to beat the shot clock and give the Nets their largest first-half margin at 34-17.
Minnesota whittled at the deficit and closed within 50-41 by the half, but New Jersey scored 20 of the first 30 points in the third quarter to blow it open and finished the period with an 83-66 advantage.
"We can't give up both inside and outside scoring, and that's what we did tonight," Timberwolves coach Randy Wittman said. "They sucked us in and knocked down the threes, to their credit."
Stromile Swift scored five points in a 9-0 run that opened the fourth quarter and extended the lead to 26.
Minnesota, which shot 43 percent (29-of-68) from the field and made just 2-of-12 from long range, returns home Saturday to host the Los Angeles Clippers.
"It had nothing to do with the schedule," Foye said. "We had good practices, we just didn't give the effort tonight, that's all. You have to come out and give the effort every night. We could have beaten them if we had just given the effort. You have to play hard for 48 minutes as a team. When we didn't want them to score, they didn't score."
NEW JERSEY 113 FINAL
Dec 5 9:54 PM
NEW JERSEY 83 END, 3RD QTR
Dec 5 9:27 PM
NEW JERSEY 50 HALFTIME
Dec 5 8:40 PM
NEW JERSEY 31 END, 1ST QTR
Dec 5 8:07 PM
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