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New Jersey at New York

Nets 102, Knicks 86

CBSSports.com wire reports

NEW YORK -- Jason Kidd made his preseason debut, and the New Jersey Nets looked sharp with their starting five finally on the floor in a 102-86 victory over the New York Knicks on Friday night.

Vince Carter scored 22 points on 8-of-11 shooting and Richard Jefferson added 15 for the Nets, who pulled away for good late in the first half en route to their second easy victory over the Knicks this month.

Kidd finished with 10 points, six rebounds and four assists in 30 minutes. He had sat out the first five exhibition games to rest a strained lower back, but felt he already got enough offseason work while playing for the United States this summer.

Nets coach Lawrence Frank was asked what Kidd needs to work on before the start of the season.

"All he needs to do is put that cape on every night like he does," Frank said. "He's one of kind. The guy's a first-ballot Hall of Famer. That's why he's a great player because it's amazing just the impact he makes even in an exhibition game, how he affects his teammates."

Eddy Curry scored 21 points for the Knicks, who trailed by as many as 26. They are now off until opening the season at Eastern Conference champion Cleveland on Nov. 2.

With Kidd back, Frank finally had his normal starting five of Kidd, Carter, Jefferson, Nenad Krstic and Jason Collins together. Krstic returned to the lineup earlier during the preseason after missing the final 56 games and the playoffs in 2006-07 because of a torn ACL.

"Tonight was a great dress rehearsal for us to understand what we have to do to win," Kidd said. "And we did a good job."

Injuries were a large reason the Nets needed a late surge just to make the playoffs last season.

New Jersey completed a 4-2 preseason, its best finish since going 6-1 in 2002, before making its second straight NBA Finals appearance. The Nets, who have owned the Knicks since Kidd arrived in New Jersey in 2001, also beat New York 110-94 at home.

The Knicks lost forward Jared Jeffries in the first quarter to a sprained right knee ligament -- not long after coach Isiah Thomas said his goal heading into the season opener was just to stay healthy.

Jeffries, starting because Quentin Richardson was out due to a sprained left ankle, leaped to steal a pass while running back downcourt after making a jumper. Jeffries appeared to bang knees with Jefferson. He left the arena to get an MRI exam that revealed a bone bruise.

"I had a sub at the table for him," Thomas said. "Hopefully it won't be serious. But we didn't make it out (of the preseason)."

Jeffries left the arena on crutches, which he will use over the weekend. He will be re-evaluated within the next two weeks -- but said he felt lucky the injury wasn't more serious, considering he needed surgery after tearing the same ligament in 2002.

"I got really good news. For the most part it'll be a couple of days, then I got to get re-evaluated," Jeffries said. "Hopefully I'll be all right. Just having a sprain as opposed to knowing how bad it could have been, I'm really excited about that."

The Nets scored the final seven points of the first quarter to open a 28-20 lead, then opened the second with an 11-2 spurt to build a 39-22 cushion on Jamaal Magloire's layup with 9 minutes remaining in the half. New York crept within four later in the period, but New Jersey quickly pushed the lead back to 11 on a 3-pointer by Carter and was ahead 52-43 at halftime.

The lead ballooned to 72-46 in the third quarter, but the Knicks made the score a bit more respectable while playing with some starters on the floor against New Jersey's reserves in the fourth.

"Really wasn't the way we wanted to end the preseason tonight," said forward David Lee, adding that against a veteran team like the Nets "you can't take eight minutes off in the game and expect to stay in the game."

Lee had 14 points and 12 rebounds for New York. Nate Robinson also scored 14 points.

The Nets open the season Wednesday against Chicago.

Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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