Nets player grades: Cam Johnson drops 29 in 124-97 win over Hawks

NEW YORK — The Brooklyn Nets welcomed the Atlanta Hawks to Barclays center on Thursday for a pivotal game for both teams’ playoff hopes and won 124-97.

For the Nets, Cam Johnson had 29 points and four assists while Dennis Schröder had 23 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists. Mikal Bridges had 15 points and Day’Ron Sharpe had 12 points off the bench.

For the Hawks, Dejounte Murray had 28 points and six rebounds while Jalen Johnson had 14 points and five rebounds. De’Andre Hunter had 12 points and Kobe Bufkin had 12 points.

In the first half, the Nets did a good job of taking control of this game from the beginning as they poured on the threes in the first quarter, specifically from Cam Johnson and Mikal Bridges. In the second quarter, however, Atlanta was able to get back into this game thanks to Dejounte Murray going off for 14 points in the second quarter.

In the second half, the Nets continued their dominance as they kept on making three-point shots and seemingly got anything they wanted at will. Atlanta waived the white flag in the middle of the fourth quarter as they just couldn’t keep up with Brooklyn’s scoring and decided to save their energy for another important matchup on Saturday.

Here are your Nets player grades following Thursday’s win:

Dennis Schröder: A+

Schröder did a great job of scoring the basketball in this one as he had his game working from the mid-range and from three-point land as well. As the starting point guard, Schröder has the responsibility of setting up the offense while also looking for his shots at the same time. He did both in this contest and he did a good job of rebounding the basketball to provide some extra value during his time on the floor.

Mikal Bridges: B+

Bridges had a solid offensive game in this one as while he struggled shooting the ball from the three-point line, he was able to make up for that by putting in some nice mid-range shots like he did earlier this season. One thing that was interesting was Bridges shooting some floaters in the lane which could be another way that he is expanding his game when he can’t get all the way to the rim. Bridges did a good job of rebounding the basketball and he did a good job of passing the ball to his teammates as well.

Cam Johnson: A+

Johnson had one of his best games this season as he seemingly couldn’t miss from three-point land to begin this game. Johnson has been an interesting player for the Nets this season as he has tended to be either hot or cold with few games in between. Be that as it may, Johnson was red-hot in this one and his shooting and overall scoring gave Brooklyn the great start it needed to keep its confidence throughout the contest.

Dorian Finney-Smith: C

Finney-Smith did not have his best offensive game for the Nets in this one as he couldn’t get much to fall from deep despite getting some open looks from there. He did what he could to get something going towards the basket, but Finney-Smith wasn’t able to create much space off the dribble. Finney-Smith did a good job of rebounding the basketball and he played some solid defense on players like Jalen Johnson and Saddiq Bey.

Nic Claxton: C

Claxton had one of his least-impactful games for the Nets this season as he was not involved much in the offensive flow because of how well Cam Johnson and Dennis Schröder were shooting the basketball. Granted, Claxton was inefficient finishing at the basket thanks to the presence of Clint Capela of Jalen Johnson near the rim, but Claxton also did not get many shots to work with either. Claxton did a good job of rebounding the basketball, but he could have been more impactful protecting the rim so that’s something for him to work on moving forward.

Lonnie Walker IV: C+

Walker had a solid performance for the Nets in this one as he was able to provide some offensive punch despite struggling with his shot early in the contest. Walker did most of his damage from three-point land, but he also had some solid opportunities to finish at the rim if he had his touch going like he has at certain points this season. He did a decent job of rebounding, but Walker did his game by providing some nice scoring off the bench to help the Nets pour it on.

Day'Ron Sharpe: B+

Sharpe had a good performance for the Nets in this one as he was efficient with the few touches that he got on the offensive end. While Sharpe did not get many looks within Brooklyn’s offense, he did a good job of rebounding the basketball and remaining active on the glass throughout his time on the floor. Sharpe actually had some nice passes to show that he has that in his skill set when he is given those windows to attack the defense.

Jalen Wilson: C

Wilson saw some extended minutes in this one which is encouraging given that he was previously out of the rotation once Kevin Ollie took over as interim head coach. With a matchup this important for the Nets’ playoffs hope this season, Wilson played solidly as while he didn’t shoot the ball well, he did some of the little things that will keep him in a coach’s good graces. Wilson did a good job of rebounding the basketball and he made some great effort plays that the fanbase has known him for since he stepped on the floor.

Dennis Smith Jr.: C+

Smith had a good outing for the Nets in this one as he was efficient from the floor on the offensive end, including some shots that some would consider to be outside of how he’s expected to score. However, with the way that Brooklyn was scoring in this contest, it made sense that Smith joined the party by hitting some low-percentage jumpshots. Other than scoring, Smith did a good job of passing the ball and he was disruptive on the defensive end as well.

Story originally appeared on Nets Wire