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NBA: Kevin Durant leads Nets to 42-point rout over Wizards

NBA: Kevin Durant leads Nets to 42-point rout over Wizards

Kevin Durant Brooklyn Nets NBA

Kevin Durant #7 of the Brooklyn Nets crosses Daniel Gafford #21 of the Washington Wizards during the first half at Capital One Arena on November 4, 2022 in Washington, DC. Patrick Smith/Getty Images/AFP

Kevin Durant had 28 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds to help the visiting Brooklyn Nets overcome the absence of Kyrie Irving and earn a 128-86 win over the Washington Wizards on Friday.

Durant, who is from the Washington DC area, made 10 of 21 shots from the floor and all six from the free throw line. The 12-time All-Star highlighted his night by using a series of moves to deke Daniel Gafford on the field before calmly sinking an undisputed jumper with 27.2 seconds left in the first quarter.

Brooklyn’s Nic Claxton recorded 18 points and nine rebounds while Cam Thomas contributed 17 points and six assists off the bench. Yuta Watanabe scored 14 points, Royce O’Neale added 13 points with eight assists and Edmond Sumner had 11 points starting in place of Irving.

Irving missed the first contest of his team-imposed suspension that spans “no less than five games” after failing to formally apologize for the hurt caused by his posts following his promotion of a book and film containing anti-Semitic messages.

Brooklyn didn’t seem fazed by Irving’s absence. The Nets finished the game on a 70-29 run and shot a solid 55.6 percent from the floor (50 of 90).

Bradley Beal scored 20 points, Kyle Kuzma had 19 and Kristaps Porzingis had 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Wizards, who have lost four of their last five games.

Brooklyn took an 85-60 lead after riding a 27-3 run to close the second and third quarters. Durant drained a 3-pointer with 2.2 seconds left in the second quarter before sinking a midrange jumper to end the run with 6:59 left in the third.

The Nets didn’t slow down and increased their advantage to 96-70 after three quarters. Joe Harris sank a 3-pointer from the corner and Patty Mills drove to the basket to cap a quarter in which Brooklyn edged Washington by a 27-13 margin.

Claxton sandwiched four inside shots around Watanabe’s layup in transition to start the fourth quarter. Watanabe added a 3-pointer and a dunk to push the Nets’ lead to 111-74 early in the fourth quarter.

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