Kenny Atkinson said he wished the Nets would have attempted at least 13 more 3s in their season-opening loss to the Pistons on Wednesday night in Detroit.
Allen Crabbe will happily help fill that void.
The shooting guard is likely to make his season debut Friday against the Knicks after missing time with a left ankle sprain.
“Once the game starts, I just feel like the adrenaline gets going and you’re not worried about the ankle hurting anymore,” Crabbe said Thursday. “I think I’ll be fine.”
Crabbe may come off the bench and play limited minutes, but his 3-point touch will be a welcome addition. The Nets shot 5-for-27 from downtown Wednesday, with center Jarrett Allen leading the team on 2-for-3 shooting.
But Atkinson wants more.
“We didn’t have enough attempts,” he said. “That’s what I’m mad about. … I think the goal is in the 40s.”
That’s music to Crabbe’s ears.
“You know Kenny, man,” Crabbe said. “He gives the green light to everybody. If you work on it, then shoot it.”
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was not at practice Thursday, but not because of his hip injury — he left the team Wednesday night for the birth of his first child, a baby boy.
Atkinson said the plan was for Hollis-Jefferson to play against the Knicks, but “personal and family reasons go above everything,” so his status for Friday has yet to be determined.
“A young guy like that, it will change his world,” Atkinson said.
The Nets missed Hollis-Jefferson’s presence against the Pistons, getting crushed on the boards with Jared Dudley starting at the four and playing 36 minutes. Small forward Joe Harris played a team-high 37 minutes, while Treveon Graham subbed off the bench, but battled early foul trouble.
“Hopefully I can do a better job of balancing the minutes a little better, no matter what it is,” Atkinson said.
Spencer Dinwiddie made waves during the preseason by saying the Nets were better than the Knicks. Friday night, they’ll get the first of four chances to prove that on the court.
“Big time. We didn’t get one last year, so we definitely owe them,” D’Angelo Russell said. “New York needs somebody to cheer for. It’s the Knicks or it’s the Nets, whichever team does the best I think it’s a great opportunity to create a fan base and create that support in general.”
DeMarre Carroll, who underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right ankle Tuesday, was in a walking boot at practice. … Shabazz Napier (hamstring) and Alan Williams (ankle) will remain out.