The Bulls’ reserve guard torched the Nets over the final stretch, which resulted in a 142-134 triple overtime win for Chicago.
So the Nets head home to Barclays Center tonight trying to keep their season alive. Both games in Chicago could have ended differently, but the team cannot afford to dwell on what’s already happened.
There likely would have been a much different feel in the building tonight had the series been tied 2-2 like it should be. But instead, we’re in store for a sense of urgency among Nets’ players and fans alike.
The Nets will need the crowd support in this one. Robinson is a man on a mission, so any means of getting him out of his rhythm will be key. Kirk Hinrich has been ruled out for the Bulls with a left calf injury, so Robinson is likely to get the start.
As for the Nets, Joe Johnson said he’s feeling good and ready to go despite a bit of stiffness in his heel. He was incredibly clutch in Saturday’s loss, and Brooklyn will again need him to show up, especially if the game comes down to the wire.
Deron Williams meanwhile had trouble hitting a big shot last game. Sure, the stat line of 32 points and 10 assists looks great on paper, but he needs to be the guy who can make a big shot, especially give Johnson’s condition.
Tonight’s game will likely feature an extended rotation from both sides, since the triple-overtime contest left everyone a bit fatigued. This could be the chance for MarShon Brooks, who recently voiced his discontent with his role, to prove his true worth. If Robinson starts for the Bulls, Brooks can take over the game when both teams have their second units on the floor. This can wind up being a huge factor in the game.
The Nets are 5-0 in Game 5’s all-time on their home floor. Game 5 should be all the team is concerned about right now, rather than looking too far ahead.
Only eight teams in NBA history have overcome a 3-1 deficit in a playoff series, but in order to force a Game 7, the Nets obviously have to take care of business in Game 5.
Game time is 7 p.m. tonight and can be seen on TNT.
Jim Mancari is a Contributor to SNYNets.com. Follow him on Twitter @JMMancari.