The Brooklyn Nets have the most superstars on their roster of any team in the NBA. Kevin Durant and James Harden are both former MVPs, while Kyrie Irving has been a perennial All-Star and incredible scorer throughout his career. They have faced some off-field issues with Kyrie missing a good chunk of the season till now, but the Nets are still the 2nd seed in the East with a 24-13 record.
A closer look at that record does show a concerning trend for the team though, with a lot of their games against fellow contending teams resulting in losses for Brooklyn. After their latest loss against the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday, the Nets have now lost 8 games against teams that are amongst the top 4 seeds in either conference, as pointed out by u/OuraniousZefs on Reddit.
This includes two losses against the 1st seed Bulls, who thrashed Brooklyn earlier in the season quite comfortably despite a 38-point performance from Kevin Durant. The Warriors, Grizzlies and Milwaukee have also taken care of the Nets with some ease in their matchups, beating them by a 14-point margin at the very least.
This is a concerning trend for the Nets, who will need to step their game up against the bigger teams if they want to make any noise come playoff time. Their inability to gel thanks to Irving's vaccination status and the ensuing drama has also been a contributing factor, but one that should now take a backseat following the point guard's return.
James Harden also has to start playing well against the better teams, as Durant is having to carry the Nets in these games. Only against the Warriors in the 8 games has Harden been able to outscore Durant, something that will be another concern for the Nets. Brooklyn's next game against a top team will be on Wednesday when they face the Bulls, and winning that game is now a must for Durant and his team.