Moke Hamilton, SNYNets.com
The Brooklyn Nets suffered a rather humbling defeat at the hands of the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday night, losing 101-77. The Nets never seriously challenged and will head to Houston to do battle with Jeremy Lin, James Harden and the Rockets on Saturday night.
With the loss, the Nets fall to 12-3 under P.J. Carlesimo. Even worse is that Deron Williams left the game with just over 30 seconds remaining in the third quarter.
Officially, the Nets announced that he has a left quad contusion. He didn't return on Friday night in the blowout and his injury makes an already tough loss even tougher for Carlesimo's Nets.
With 32.7 seconds remaining in the third quarter on Friday night and the Nets trailing by 18 points, Williams, who was guarding Jerryd Bayless at the time, attempted to fight over a Darrell Arthur screen. Arthur's knee collided with Williams' quad and he collapsed to the court before being taken out of the game.
That the injury occurred above the knee could be a blessing in disguise for the Nets, but Williams has already been battling a plethora of bumps and bruises, including a bruise to his right quad. The timing of the injury is especially frustrating since Williams has recently shown signs of putting his slow start behind him.
Afterward, Carlesimo said that he believed Williams could have returned, if needed. "If we'd made a little more of a run between the nine and six minute mark, we would have come back with our guys," he said. "[Deron Williams] could have come back in."
The major issue for Williams is not necessarily whether or not he can play in Houston, it's more so how limited he will be after adding another injury to his already long list of ailments. The injury doesn't sound too serious, but the Nets will need their major contributors at near full health with a few tough games on the horizon.
After Saturday night's game at Houston, the Nets will return home for a four games against the Orlando Magic, Miami Heat, Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers.
Under Carlesimo, the Nets are 7-0 at Barclays Center, but the competition will get a bit tougher over the next 11 days.
For now, the focus is on Houston and the Nets are still a respectable 5-3 on the road under Carlesimo. The action tips off on Saturday night at 8:00 P.M. As usual, the action will be seen on the YES Network.