Brooklyn Nets fire Johnson

THE Brooklyn Nets on Thursday fired Avery Johnson as coach after falling to 14-14 in a season with so much expectation.

General manager Billy King announced the dismissal in a statement. Assistant P.J. Carlesimo will coach the Nets at home Friday against Charlotte, according to someone with knowledge of the plans.

Johnson was named Eastern Conference coach of the month in November following a strong start by the Nets.

They opened their first season in Brooklyn by winning 11 of their first 15 games, but lost 10 of the next 13 to fall well behind first-place New York Knicks in the Atlantic Division.

The Nets were embarrassed by Boston on national TV on Christmas, then were routed by Milwaukee, 108-93, on Wednesday night for their fifth loss in six games. Noli Cruz

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