A historic second quarter propelled the Brooklyn Nets to a 118-109 victory over the Chicago Bulls Sunday at Barclays Center.

Playing on the back end of a back-to-back, the Nets looked like a team upset they weren't home watching Sunday night football in the first quarter. They trailed 36-17 at the end of the frame, shooting 7-of-22 from the field (31.8 percent) and 5-of-14 from three (35.7 percent) while allowing the Bulls to shoot 13-of-21 (61.9 percent).

Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn's speech at the break must have been akin to Al Pacino's in Any Given Sunday or Denzel Washington's in Remember the Titans, based on the shift in hustle and assertiveness that followed.

Nets stage massive comeback

Brooklyn outscored Chicago 44-19 in the second quarter, the largest margin of victory in a second quarter in franchise history. They shot 11-of-16 from three in the frame while dishing out 14 assists, marking the most made threes in a quarter in franchise history.

With defensive anchor Nic Claxton (ankle) sidelined, the Nets stymied the Bulls with a 2-3 zone defense. They held Chicago to 4-of-16 shooting with five turnovers in the frame, making quick rotations, gang rebounding and seemingly winning every 50/50 ball.

Brooklyn controlled the game the rest of the way, never letting the Bulls never get closer than six points. The Nets finished the game 25-of-53 (47.2 percent) from three, marking the most made threes by any NBA team in a game this season.

“Somehow, some way, we stay together, we don't separate. We'll figure this thing out by the end of this game,” Vaughn said of his speech after the lackluster first quarter. “I give our guys a lot of credit for taking that approach. We tried to find solutions together, and we did. And that's the growth that you want to see at this time of the year.

“I've seen so many games like this, back-to-back, energy was not very high at the beginning of a game, and you lose that game because you just kind of give up and give in; and this group did not do that tonight… What an effort overall to stay together.”

Nets react to huge comeback

While the Nets maintained belief in their ability to fight back, none of them could have anticipated a shooting turnaround the likes of which they posted in the second quarter.

“Not that I can really think of,” Lonnie Walker IV said when asked if he's ever experienced a turnaround that dramatic. “It kind of hit a point where I was just like, ‘Damn.' I looked at Mikal after Royce hit a three and he was just like, ‘Oh my goodness, this is crazy.'

“I've been a part of some interesting games along the way. I'll tell you that much,” Vaughn said. “Not sure I can remember any game like that.”

Spencer Dinwiddie controlled the offense in the second half, finishing with a team-high 24 points and nine assists. After stepping into an expanded role with Ben Simmons and Cam Thomas sidelined, Dinwiddie has averaged 17.4 points and 7.3 assists over his last eight games while dominating the ball-handling responsibilities.

“He's taking advantage of his skill set. We have enough shooting on the floor the majority of the time when he's out there that lanes are open for him to take advantage of getting to the paint,” Vaughn said of Dinwiddie pregame. “We’ve said all along that he has the ability to do that for us, and the choice that he's making of getting downhill has had an extreme impact on how we're playing offensively.”

Walker continued his breakout season, posting 20 points on 6-of-10 shooting from beyond the arc. The win marks the 25-year-old's fifth 20-point game off the bench this season, the most in the NBA. Walker's 15.4 points per game this season are the most of any player averaging fewer than 25 minutes per game. He's done so while shooting a career-high 47 percent from three on 5.8 attempts per game.

Royce O'Neale also turned in his best game as a Net, posting 20 points, his most ever with Brooklyn, while draining a career-high six triples.

Mikal Bridges added 15 points and six assists on 5-of-7 shooting, while Trendon Watford provided a significant boost off the bench, posting 11 points, four rebounds and two assists on 5-of-8 shooting.

The win brings the Nets to 8-8 on the season despite a slew of injuries and a difficult schedule. Brooklyn will have an opportunity to climb above .500 and advance to the quarterfinals of the NBA In-Season Tournament on Tuesday when they play the Toronto Raptors at home.