January 11, 2013; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Brooklyn Nets center Brook Lopez (11) grabs an offensive rebound against the Phoenix Suns during the third quarter of an NBA game at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Preview: Brooklyn Nets(40-29) vs. Phoenix Suns(23-47)

The Brooklyn Nets are currently in the midst of an eight-game road trip. After winning their first two games on the trip, the Nets were unable to extend their winning streak as they fell to the Los Angeles Clippers last night.

The Nets have fared relatively well on the road this season possessing a 18-15 road record as Brooklyn will look to add to the Phoenix Suns miseries tonight. The Suns are currently the owners of the worst record in the western conference and the owners of the fourth worst record in the NBA overall.

“Regardless of who’s not here, this is an opportunity for some of our guys,” coach Lindsey Hunter said. “You’ve got to take advantage of the opportunity to play and I don’t think guys did that.”

Going into tonight’s game the Nets are the favorites by a 6.0 margin according to ESPN.com. The Nets are injury free but the Suns on the other hand has Jared Dudley and Jermaine O’Neal listed as day-to-day.

Keys to the game: Suns

  • Get off to a quick start. The Nets are fresh off a game last night against the fast-paced, high-flying L.A Clippers, the Nets are definitely a tad winded.
  • Contain Brook Lopez! Lopez has been an offensive force in the Nets last five games averaging 23.4 points on 60% shooting from the field. Lopez also had a 38-point game two games ago against the Dallas Mavericks.
  • Pick and roll defense! Deron Williams is one of the most crafty players running the good ole pick and roll and the Suns will need to contain that.

Keys to the game: Nets

  • Attack the paint. The Suns with their lack of size are especially vulnerable in the painted area.
  • Sit in the passing lanes. The Suns have shown all season long that they’re not disciplined at taking care of the rock, if the Nets hound the passing lanes, the ball will find them.

The X-Factor!

  • Turnovers! Neither the Nets or the Suns are Chris Paul-like with the basketball. The Suns are 3rd worst in the NBA in terms of turnovers per game while the Nets are middle of the pack.

Match-up of the night!

  • The best match-up on the floor tonight will definitely be the one between the point guards. Deron Williams vs. Goran Dragic. Dragic has been a magician with the basketball since the all-star as he will look to give the veteran Williams a run for his money tonight.

Tags: Brooklyn Nets NBA Phoenix Suns

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