D’Angelo Russell scored 27 of his career-high 44 points in the fourth quarter Tuesday night, sparking Brooklyn’s rally from a 28-point second half deficit in their 123-121 win in Sacramento.
The dramatic comeback victory snapped the Nets’ four-game losing streak.
Russell gave credit to his teammates for freeing him up from the Kings’ defense.
Per The AP:
“We were at our wit’s end, it was kind of desperation,” [Nets head coach Kenny] Atkinson said. “It was a little bit like, ‘Let’s conserve our main guys and kind of play it out.’ I wasn’t expecting an amazing comeback, I just have to be honest. And then slowly but surely we started cutting the lead.”
After scoring 17 points in the first half and going without a point in the third quarter, Russell shot 10 of 15 in the fourth quarter, repeatedly burning Sacramento’s defense with quick drives to the basket. He scored 16 straight points during one stretch while getting plenty of help from his teammates.
“I give a lot of credit to our bigs,” Russell said. “They set screens and got me open, got me downhill. Once you get downhill, any player that can get downhill and see the floor like that and see the rim wide open, the sky’s the limit.”
Russell’s 27 points are the most in a fourth quarter in the NBA this season. Russell also had four 3-pointers in the fourth quarter, breaking Allen Crabbe’s single-season record of 201, set last season. Russell has 202.
“Once you get in that groove it’s hard to get you out of it,” Russell said. “No matter what defense a team throws at you, you’re going to find a way to get it done. That’s kind of what it was.”