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Nets vs. Cavaliers: Crabbe, Hollis-Jefferson Responding to Starting Moves

As the Brooklyn Nets return home Monday night to take on the Cleveland Cavaliers after a brief trip to Washington, D.C. Allen Crabbe continues his strong shooting from 3-point range.

It’s been 10 games now since Crabbe moved into the starting lineup in place of the injured Caris LeVert. At the time, Crabbe was in a shooting slump that had lasted the first month of the season. After suffering an ankle injury in Brooklyn’s second preseason game, Crabbe missed the final two preseason games and the season opener in Detroit. After returning for the home opener against the Knicks, he shot 26.9 percent over his first 13 games.

Since Nov. 14, however, Crabbe has been back in the form that ranked him second in NBA 3-point shooting during the 2016-17 season. After shooting 6-for-11 from deep in Brooklyn’s Friday/Saturday back-to-back, Crabbe is at 43.5 percent (27-62) over the Nets’ last 10 games while averaging 10.5 points per game. That has elevated his 3-point percentage for the season to 34.9 percent.

STARTING UP RONDAE

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson has also responded well to a move into the starting lineup. Hollis-Jefferson was facing a similar scenario as Crabbe: a returning starter whose preseason had been limited by injury. In Hollis-Jefferson’s case, it was an adductor strain suffered over the summer. He missed the entire preseason schedule, as well as Brooklyn’s first three regular season games.

In his first 16 games — including one spot start stepping in for an ill Jarrett Allen — Hollis-Jefferson averaged 9.3 points in 21.1 minutes per game, shooting 40.0 percent.

Since moving into the starting lineup against Philadelphia on Nov. 25, Hollis-Jefferson has been playing 31.0 minutes per game and averaging 13.3 points and 7.0 rebounds per game while shooting 48.8 percent.

JOE HARRIS RETURNS?

After missing the Nets’ last two games due to adductor tightness, Joe Harris was listed as questionable on Sunday for Monday night’s game against Cleveland.

ABOUT THE CAVALIERS

The Cavaliers are 4-18, last among all Eastern Conference teams. After back-to-back wins over the Philadelphia 76ers and Houston Rockets on Nov. 23 and Nov. 24, they’ve lost their last four games. Kevin Love is sidelined indefinitely after toe surgery. The last game he played was Cleveland’s fourth game of the season on Oct. 24 against the Nets. D’Angelo Russell had 18 points and eight assists that night as six Nets scored in double-figures. Brooklyn also limited Cleveland to 38.2 percent shooting, including 16.7 from 3-point range. The Cavs are last in the league in 3-point attempts despite ranking 14th in 3-point percentage and 29th in 2-point percentage, so they’re last in effective field goal percentage. With Love out, Jordan Clarkson leads Cleveland with 16.0 points per game.

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