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

Kevin Durant collected 28 points, a season-high 11 assists and nine rebounds to help the visiting Brooklyn Nets overcome the absence of Kyrie Irving and breeze to a 128-86 victory over the Washington Wizards on Friday.

Durant, who is from the Washington D.C. area, made 10 of 21 shots from the floor and all six attempts from the free-throw line. The 12-time All-Star highlighted his night by using a series of moves to deke Daniel Gafford to the court before calmly sinking an uncontested 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 while making the start in place of Irving.

Irving sat out the first contest of his team-imposed suspension that spans “no less than five games” after he failed to formally apologize for the hurt caused by his posts following his promotion of a book and film with antisemitic messages.

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

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

Brooklyn claimed an 85-60 lead after piecing together a 27-3 run to bridge the second and third quarters. Durant drained a 3-pointer with 2.2 seconds remaining in the second quarter before sinking a mid-range jumper to end the run with 6:59 left in the third.

The Nets didn’t take their foot off the gas and boosted 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 outscored Washington by a 27-13 margin.

Claxton sandwiched four shots from the interior 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.

–Field Level Media

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