After the shocking, stunning, unbelievable loss to the Wizards, who are now 4-13, where the Nets, with James Harden, had a five-point lead with 12 seconds left in the game and lost 149-146, yes you read that right the Nets lost a game where they scored 146 points and had a lead with less than 13 seconds. Let’s take a look at the statistics of the Nets with James Harden and see if we can get to the bottom of the Nets historic defensive woes and historic offensive prowess.
The Nets have been a top 3 favorite to win the eastern conference or to win the NBA Finals before they got James Harden. Now that they’ve had him for almost two full weeks, let’s check in on the stats before and after Mr. Harden showed up in Brooklyn.
Before the Nets got James Harden they were 9-6, since they got Harden they are now 14-9 good for second in the Eastern conference. They were also 6th in the league in scoring, averaging 116 points per game before Harden. While that is not bad by any stretch of the imagination, Harden took them to a whole other level.
Since the deal with Houston, the Nets with James Harden have skyrocketed to 1st in the NBA in points per game with 122 and the best offensive rating of all time which is set at 122.6. What offensive rating is, is the amount of points produced by a team per every 100 total offensive possessions.
The previous record for best offensive rating was the 2016 Golden State Warriors with an offensive rating of 116.8. It’s not just the offensive rating that has gone up either, their assists, three point makes, and field goal percentage have also had an uptick since Harden’s come to town.
Now on the flip side of the ball, we know the Nets can score points better than anyone in the entire league. Since acquiring James Harden the Nets defensive rating has plummeted to the worst in the league and could possibly be the worst of all time even being worse than the 2011-12 Charlotte Bobcats.
Defensive rating is based on the amount of points a team gives up per 100 possessions. The Nets defensive rating before the Harden deal was already low at 24th in the league at 108.9 and now has severely plummeted since Harden arrived.
The Nets defensive rating right now is 118.9, which if the season were to end today would end as the worst defensive rating in NBA history. So, is it a coincidence that the Nets have the greatest offense in NBA history while also having the worst defensive rating in NBA history?
It certainly looks like Harden’s effect on the offense has been everything they’ve wanted and more but his presence and the departure of Caris LeVert, Jarrett Allen, and Taurean Prince has severely affected their defense.
The Nets will go as far as this offense and the big three takes them and they are completely mocking the phrase “defense wins championships” if they win a championship in the next two coming seasons.
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