NEW YORK (AP) — Caris LeVert’s driving layup with a second left gave him a career-high 28 points and the Brooklyn Nets their first victory of the season, 107-105 over the New York Knicks on Friday night.
LeVert surpassed the 27 points he scored Wednesday night in Detroit, when the Nets fell just short. He made sure they pulled this one out, driving right into the lane and putting up the tie breaking shot over Tim Hardaway Jr.
D’Angelo Russell and Jarrett Allen each added 15 points for the Nets. They improved to 6-1 in home openers since moving to Brooklyn in 2012.
Hardaway and Enes Kanter each scored 29 points for the Knicks, who were trying for just their third 2-0 start in 20 years. Kanter tied it on a three-point play with 15.9 seconds remaining but all they could manage for a final shot after LeVert’s basket was a long 3-pointer by Hardaway that wasn’t close.
The Nets were still without starting forwards Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, who just became a father, and DeMarre Carroll, who had right ankle surgery. But they did get back Allen Crabbe, their normal starting guard who came off the bench after missing the opener while recovering sprained left ankle.
They started fast, shooting 70 percent in the first quarter, and were in control until early in the second half. Then, Kanter and Frank Ntilikina had a couple of baskets apiece in an 11-0 run that wiped out a 10-point deficit and gave the Knicks a 66-65 lead on Hardaway’s 3-pointer.
New York was ahead 76-74 after three quarters and neither team led by more than six in a back-and-forth final 12 minutes.
Knicks: G Courtney Lee, sidelined by a neck injury since the preseason, experienced spasms when he picked up his workout level, delaying his season debut. … G Emmanual Mudiay didn’t like the way his sprained right ankle responded when he tried putting more pressure on it and remained out, with coach David Fizdale saying he would be day to day.
Nets: Joe Harris’ first 3-pointer was his 237th a Net, moving him into 10th place on the franchise’s career list. Next up for Harris, in his third season with Brooklyn, is recently retired Richard Jefferson (286), who is now a Nets’ analyst for YES Network. … The Nets play only once at home in their first five games. They play three straight on the road before hosting Golden State on Oct. 28. … F Traveon Graham strained his left hamstring in the first half and missed the rest of the game.
The Nets made 11 of their first 14 shots from the field.
QBS IN THE CROWD
Jets quarterbacks Sam Darnold and Josh McCown were at the game.
Knicks: Host Boston on Saturday night.
Nets: Visit Indiana on Saturday night.
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