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In Playoffs, Steve Nash forgot the one thing that kept injured Nets afloat all season long

Sometimes the answer is right under your nose. When Steve Nash had the opportunity to go into his bag and try to find a spark in Games 6 and 7 with Kevin Durant and a hobbled James Harden shouldering the scoring load and massive amounts of minutes, the head coach decided to ride or die with his starting five. Despite Joe Harris' shooting woes, Harden's lack of health and Blake Griffin expending a world of energy and fouls trying to hold down Giants Antentokounmpo, the bench was largely neglected in the final three games of the series.
Durant was nothing short of brilliant and Harden needs to be commended gutting out a Grade 2 hamstring strain, but how quickly Nash forgot that the team's Big three played in only nine regular season games together and it was the role players that helped Brooklyn climb to a 48-24 mark, good enough for the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference. Bruce Brown, Jeff Green, Nicolas Claxton, Landrey Shamet, DeAndre Jordan, Mike James and others provided steady contributions to help mitigate the damage from losing Durant, Harden and Kyrie Irving for prolonged stretches during the regular season. It's true that NBA playoff basketball is an entirely different animal, but a team's bench players traditionally elevate their level of play with a boost from the home crowd and could have made an impact in Game 7, especially with both Durant and Harden showing clear signs of fatigue and tired legs late in the game.
The 2020-2021 campaign ended in bitter disappointment for the Nets and their fans, but the undermanned squad gave everything it could to try and push deep into the playoffs and survive until reinforcements in the form of Irving and potentially Spencer Dinwiddie arrived. Unfortunately, the clock struck midnight on the Nets' seaosn in the second round, but perhaps if Nash exhibited a bit more trust in his bench to provide a jolt, but if nothing less some much needed rest for his star players, Brooklyn might still be alive in the playoff chase.


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