Dinwiddie drives through Cavs at Barclays
Sixth man extraordinaire sparks Brooklyn to second straight win
Spencer Dinwiddie took over a game for the first time since returning from a five-week absence due to a broken thumb Wednesday night at Downtown’s Barclays Center.
And the Brooklyn Nets would love to see more of it.
Dinwiddie, a strong candidate for NBA Sixth Man of the Year honors before sitting out 14 games while recovering from his injury, poured in a game-high 28 points to help Brooklyn sneak past the Cleveland Cavaliers, 113-107, in front of 14,177 fans on the corners of Atlantic and Flatbush avenues.
The 25-year-old reserve point man scored nine points during a critical 14-0 run during the fourth quarter to put away an otherwise game Cleveland unit, which had cut the Nets’ lead to just two points with 7:20 to play.
Dinwiddie began the game-winning surge by draining a 3-pointer, then fed rookie Rodions Kurucs for a thunderous dunk on Brooklyn’s next possession.
He also assisted on Joe Harris’ ensuing 3-point bomb, drained two free throws, hit another 3-ball and drained a shot in the lane to give the Nets a 110-94 cushion with 4:05 left.
“He’s a speed demon. He’s a dragster out there,” Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson said of Dinwiddie, who is averaging 18 points per contest over four games since his return to action.
“It’s hard to keep up with him and keep driving it to the rim,” Atkinson added. “So, he did those things, and I thought it was a game changer for us.”
D’Angelo Russell added 25 points for Brooklyn, which will be seeking its third consecutive win Saturday night in Atlanta before returning here Monday night to host Detroit in a pivotal matchup between the teams currently vying for the No. 6 seed in the ongoing Eastern Conference playoff race.
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