Nets target bounce-back effort with Bobcats in town

The Brooklyn Nets still have the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race, but the lead is evaporating.

The Nets will try to get back on track Saturday night when they welcome the Charlotte Bobcats to Barclays Center.

After an eight-game road trip, where the Nets went 5-3, they had to play the day after the final road game. On Thursday, Brooklyn let one get away when the Chicago Bulls came to town and won, 92-90.

Nate Robinson scored the go-ahead layup with 22.7 seconds left, then Brook Lopez missed a jumper with a second left that could've tied it.

"I contributed a lot to how the final score ended up, and that's definitely not something I'm happy with or proud of," said Lopez, who had 28 points on 10-for-19 shooting.

Deron Williams was the game's leading scorer with 30 points and 10 assists. Joe Johnson was the only other Brooklyn player in double figures with 12 points.

"This is tough. This was a game we that desperately needed," said Johnson. "In the second half, I just didn't think we pushed the ball as much as we did in the first and play as loose as we did in the first. It hurt us."

The Nets are one game ahead of Chicago and two in front of Atlanta in the Eastern Conference standings.

Charlotte will open a three-game road trip Saturday against Brooklyn, Memphis and Detroit, and dropped an 89-79 decision to Miami on Friday.

Rookie Michael Kidd-Gilchrist posted 18 points and 14 rebounds, while Kemba Walker and Gerald Henderson scored 12 and 11 points, respectively, in defeat. Henderson was averaging 25.8 ppg in his previous five contests.

"I thought we played really, really hard," said Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap. "We played a clean game, played an efficient game, sometimes its just hard to explain."

The Bobcats still couldn't overcome the Heat, who played without LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Ray Allen. Mike Miller led Miami with 26 points.

Charlotte has lost six of eight games and is 6-32 away from home.

The Nets have won six straight against the Bobcats, including the first two meetings this season. The Bobcats have lost three straight as the visitor in this series.