Long Island Nets lose heartbreaker to Maine Celtics

The Long Island Nets lost a tough game against the undefeated Maine Celtics Tuesday night.


Adam Covey

The inside of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, the home court of the Long Island Nets. (Adam Covey for WSN)

Adam Covey, Staff Writer

The Long Island Nets, the NBA G League affiliate of the Brooklyn Nets, were defeated by the No. 1 Maine Celtics by a score of 117-111 Tuesday night. With the loss, the Nets fell to 0-4 on the season. 

But despite the loss, the game was perhaps the best performance of the season for the Nets, as they went neck-and-neck with the only undefeated team in the G League.

The Nets led for nearly the entire first half and held a 12-point lead at the break. After trailing by as many as 16 points in the third quarter, the Celtics stormed back to tie the score at 93 heading into the fourth. After a back-and-forth in the first nine minutes of the fourth quarter, Maine took the lead after center Mfiondu Kabengele’s three-pointer, with under three minutes remaining in the game. 

Each team benefitted from a balanced scoring attack, with six players scoring double figures for the Nets, and seven players doing so for the Celtics. All five starters for each team notched at least 12 points. Both squads also shot very well from the 3-point range, as the Nets connected on 41% of their attempts while the Celtics hit 37.5%.

Guard/forward Jordan Bowden led the way for the Nets with 26 points, while guard Chris Chiozza added 23 points, including seven threes, and a team-high nine assists. Forward/center RaiQuan Gray had an impressive all-around performance, contributing 13 points, eight rebounds, six assists, two steals and one block. Kabengele was the leading scorer for the Celtics with 20 points, and guard JD Davison chipped in with 18 points and nine assists. Celtics forward Luka Samanic had a double-double with 17 points and 14 rebounds. 

When asked about what his team can build upon from the game, Nets head coach Ronnie Burrell told WSN how the team is starting to find its defensive identity and play with more physicality and toughness. He also mentioned the positive impact of having Chiozza on the floor, who was playing in only his second game of the season. 

Up next for the Nets are back-to-back road games against the Greensboro Swarm on Friday, Nov. 18, and Saturday, Nov. 19.

Contact Adam Covey at [email protected].