NEW YORK — The Nets rule New York this season, for whatever that’s worth. Now they won’t see it again for a while.
Brook Lopez scored 22 points, Jarrett Jack made a clutch 3-pointer with 13.8 seconds left and Brooklyn beat the Knicks 92-88 on Feb. 6.
The Nets secured the city series by beating the Knicks for the third time in three meetings this season, clinching the series for the first time since sweeping all four games in 2006-07.
Lopez had nine rebounds and Jack finished with 20 points and eight assists for the Nets, who led by 17 in the first half before the Knicks chased them down with a big third quarter. Brooklyn then made the big plays for its third straight win.
“The last three games have been great,” guard Deron Williams said. “Three wins in a row. Tonight it was another where things didn’t go right for us, but down the stretch we found ways to win.”
Brooklyn matched its win total for all of January in 15 games. The Nets lost seven in a row at home during the month but have won both games at Barclays Center since the calendar turned to February.
They will have no more. They now clear out so the NBA can prepare the arena to co-host next weekend’s All-Star festivities. Brooklyn plays eight straight on the road until hosting Golden State on March 2.
“This is big for us to close out the first half, especially before All-Star break, going into it on a positive note knowing that we start out from the West Coast right after the break,” forward Joe Johnson said.
Carmelo Anthony scored 21 points for the Knicks but shot 6 of 23.
Johnson had 13 points and 11 rebounds, and Kevin Garnett chipped in 12 points and nine boards for the Nets.
The Knicks have one more at home, hosting the Warriors on Feb. 14, before turning over Madison Square Garden.
They rallied to lead in the second half of this one and trailed by just one before botching their chance when they lost Jack, who found himself wide open after a pick-and-roll play for a 3-pointer that made it 90-86. Nets coach Lionel Hollins threw his left arm into the air in celebration.
“It was a miscommunication, if there was communication at all,” Anthony said. Anthony cut it to two with a layup before Jack added two more free throws with 8.4 seconds to go.
It ended up a good game in what’s been a mostly miserable season in the Big Apple. The Nets can still salvage theirs, fighting for the No. 8 seed in the Eastern Conference despite their 21-28 record. The Knicks fell to 10-40.
Jose Calderon had 15 points for the Knicks, who got a boost from Amare Stoudemire after he missed four games with a sprained left ankle. Stoudemire had nine points in 19 minutes off the bench.
The Nets shot 62 percent in the first quarter and led by as many as 13. The lead grew to 40-23 when Lopez capped a 7-0 run with a basket with 7:43 left in the half, but the Knicks put together a late flurry to cut it to 53-45 at the break.
Calderon was 3 for 3 behind the arc in the third, when New York outscored Brooklyn 25-15.
(BRIAN MAHONEY, AP Basketball Writer)