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Heat look sharp, cruise to blowout Game 1 win over Nets

May 6, 2014, 9:53 PM EDT

LeBron, Andray Blatche LeBron, Andray Blatche

The Nets beat the Heat all four times that the two teams met during the regular season, an achievement that could have given them confidence heading into a playoff battle that many expected to need the full seven games to be decided.

If Brooklyn was feeling good about its chances, Miami crushed that sentiment with 107-86 victory in Game 1 that honestly wasn’t that close.

The plan from the get go seemed to be for Nets head coach Jason Kidd not to push his players in what figures to be a long series, especially coming off of a thrilling Game 7 victory over the Raptors just two days before. He had gone 11 players deep into his bench by early in the second quarter — a move that isn’t uncommon for Kidd, but one that seemed to shuffle too many bodies in and out of the lineup while the team was struggling to find any offensive rhythm in the early going.

Miami had gotten out to a lead of as many as 11 points in the second, and primarily did so by taking high-percentage shots close to the basket. Points in the paint were a huge differentiator in this Heat victory, where the Nets were outscored 52-28. Miami took 35 of its 74 shots from the restricted area, and made 24 of them which was good for a mark of 68.4 percent.

The Nets, meanwhile, were just 8-of-20 from in close, but above average three-point shooting (10-of-24) kept the deficit manageable at times.

Despite Miami’s early success, they were up just three at halftime. They made quick work of the Nets in the third, however, and used a 15-2 run to build a 16-point lead that would be impossible to come back from, both given the way the Heat were scoring inside, along with the extremely slow pace of the contest.

As John Schumann of NBA.com noted, the 13-point deficit the Nets faced entering the fourth seemed much worse. The Heat scored 61 points on 41 possessions in the second half, which was an insane clip that would have translated into 149 points per 100 possessions.

LeBron James led the way for Miami with 22 points on 10-of-15 shooting, on a night where the Heat shot 56.8 percent from the field. The lead reached as many as 23 points, which allowed Kidd to sit Paul Pierce, Joe Johnson and Deron Williams the entire fourth period, while playing Kevin Garnett just 1:16 over the final 12 minutes.

If rest was what the Nets needed, they certainly got plenty of it in this one once the game got out of hand perhaps earlier than expected. They’ll need to plan to play everyone much heavier minutes in Game 2 to try to steal one before things shift back to Brooklyn, but if the Heat are able to get what they want offensively as they did in this one, it’s going to make for a very quick series.

  1. miamatt - May 6, 2014 at 9:55 PM

    It puts the lotion on its skin.

    • packergator - May 7, 2014 at 9:29 AM

      It does this whenever it’s told. Or else it gets the hose again.

      • heat256 - May 7, 2014 at 12:07 PM

        PUT THE F@#!KIN LOTION IN THE BASKET!!!!!

  2. 1972wasalongtimeago - May 6, 2014 at 9:56 PM

    5

    • ProBasketballPundit - May 6, 2014 at 10:19 PM

      Hey did you notice that LeBron had his XVI mouthguard back in?

  3. jzone954 - May 6, 2014 at 10:03 PM

    Yes… I’ll have the “youngest player to reach 4,000 points in the playoffs” please..

  4. jbeagles23 - May 6, 2014 at 10:04 PM

    Brooklyn is playing not to get blown out. Great to see birdman showing that scrub plumlee how a real hard hat player plays

  5. prareedoggin - May 6, 2014 at 10:05 PM

    As a Heat fan i knew we would win but i expected it to be a lot closer… Nice!

  6. lazykiz - May 6, 2014 at 10:08 PM

    It says a lot when Bron and Wade drove on you all night, got limited to 2ft’s ( LeBron 2-2, Wade 0-0 ) and neither of them taking three pointers and you still get blown out.

    But not surprising, the only hype in this series was that the Nets “sweeped” the Heat in the regular season.

  7. fanofthegame79 - May 6, 2014 at 10:09 PM

    Honestly, it’s the lack of any rim-protector on the Nets. The Heat have absolutely no fear of attacking the basket. I just hope that Birdman’s knee is ok; he brings too much energy (not to mention a big body) to lose even for a game.

  8. jzone954 - May 6, 2014 at 10:12 PM

    I mean, there the Two Time defending champs for a reason. Still plenty of series left but games two will either tell me the Heat will sweep Brooklyn, or that Brooklyn has a chance at winning two games.

    • packergator - May 7, 2014 at 9:36 AM

      I’m cautious there; the narrative could change yet again if the Nets can steal Game 2 in Miami.

  9. 1972wasalongtimeago - May 6, 2014 at 10:14 PM

    Imagine it without Dern Williams’ 2 #ofcourse shots. Was there any question those we’re going in?

    • ProBasketballPundit - May 6, 2014 at 10:18 PM

      I knew somebody was going to bring this up. Allow me to remind you that the Nets had about five shots go in and out in the second and third quarters. Not saying that would have made any difference but I think it at least offsets Deron Williams’ lucky shots.

      • 1972wasalongtimeago - May 6, 2014 at 10:43 PM

        All year, in just about every game, the Heat’s opponent hits at least one crazy “ofcourse” shot; either at the 24 sec buzzer or end of quarter buzzer. Everytime it happens about 80,000 heat fans tweet #ofcourse. It’s become part of the fabric of tbe season.

    • ProBasketballPundit - May 6, 2014 at 10:53 PM

      Oh I didn’t realize that. I guess Jeff Green’s fadeaway 3-pointer was an #ofcourse shot?

      • 1972wasalongtimeago - May 6, 2014 at 11:05 PM

        It’s on the Mt Rushmore

  10. ProBasketballPundit - May 6, 2014 at 10:16 PM

    Did Gilbert Arenas and Tracy McGrady tweet about Kevin Garnett scoring 0 points?

    • yomarianob - May 6, 2014 at 11:06 PM

      Oh come on, that’s silly.. KG is on the end of his HOF career. Hibbert is supposedly in his prime..

    • ranfan12 - May 7, 2014 at 2:55 AM

      garnet would come to their house lol

  11. jamesk2465 - May 6, 2014 at 10:16 PM

    I don’t even know why I watch Heat games anymore till June. Its pre evident they’re going back to the NBA finals

    • casualcommenter - May 6, 2014 at 10:34 PM

      It was clear for most of the season that the only realistic chance for the Heat to get seriously challenged in the East during the playoffs was if the Pacers’ were playing at a high level in May.

      It’s May, and the Pacers are struggling, so barring injury, the Heat will be going to the Finals for the fourth year in a row.

      It’s a good time to be in the East.

      • jamesk2465 - May 6, 2014 at 10:38 PM

        Pre much the whole eastern conference underachieved. I thought this would be the yr Miami would be challanged, but every team flopped. Indianas done, Bulls season was over when they lost Rose, Nets underachieved for a team worth 100 mill, Hawks lost Horford for the year. Then teams like Knicks, Pistons and Cavs that I thought would be good sucked.

  12. realfootballfan - May 6, 2014 at 10:18 PM

    I guess the regular season sweep didn’t matter just like it didn’t matter with the Bulls 3 years ago and didn’t matter with the Celtics 2 years ago. Who would have thought?

    • buffalowned - May 6, 2014 at 10:38 PM

      Don’t tell that to ESPN…what good would the “panic meter” be if the regular season didn’t matter?

    • packergator - May 7, 2014 at 9:35 AM

      Weren’t 3 of those games decided by 1 point (or 2 games)? There were subs starting in the other game, so that regular-season sweep isn’t as decisive for the Nets as the talking heads would have us believe.

  13. phillyfan11 - May 6, 2014 at 10:19 PM

    Nets now have 3 maybe 4 games left in their season.

  14. jasper36 - May 6, 2014 at 10:24 PM

    The Nets will not survive long if the continue to take so many jump shots. Yes they have plenty of big shot makers, but tonight showed me that if the Nets have a hard time getting to the rim. They will struggle, unlike against the Raptors where the teams just traded those outside field goals.

  15. ourempirestrikesback - May 6, 2014 at 10:40 PM

    The Heat are obviously really really good but the Eastern Conference is pathetic. Everybody knows the Heat don’t even have to try until the NBA Finals and the East playoffs are just a formality. Great if you’re a Heat fan, but bad if you want suspense or excitement.

    • bougin89 - May 7, 2014 at 9:25 AM

      The Nets would be an all time great team…8 years ago…

  16. zoomy123 - May 6, 2014 at 10:49 PM

    The fact that anyone thought this series could go 7 games just shows how much people are prisoners of the moment and rely too heavily on regular season records. It is universally acknowledged that Miami’s achilles heel is their front court. Brooklyn has absolutely no front court–KG is old and Blatche is a point guard in a center’s body. And NO jump shooting team can beat Miami in the playoffs. This has been proven again and again. Brooklyn has a team of difficult shot-makers but those are low percentage shots that won’t get them enough points to compete with Miami’s perimeter defense.

    • fanofthegame79 - May 7, 2014 at 1:28 AM

      Not 7 games…but it could easily go 6 games. If the Heat win the first two games, they simply did what they were supposed to do. All the Nets have to do is win a pair of games at home. Or, what if the Nets come out much sharper in game two and steal one in Miami? As a Heat fan, I don’t want to read too much into this win. (as much as I’d like to, anyway)

      • zoomy123 - May 7, 2014 at 8:01 AM

        This series could easily go 6 games based on what? Like I said, Brooklyn doesn’t have a front court that can exploit Miami’s one true weakness and Brooklyn can’t score enough points because no jump shooting team can beat Miami’s perimeter defense. Look at how lopsided the points in the paint were in game 1. You think that’s gonna change?

      • fanofthegame79 - May 7, 2014 at 8:05 AM

        Based on a tempered response to game 1. I agree with all of your points, and I posted something similar (that the Nets have no rim protector that the Heat have to respect, allowing them full run at the hoop), but I also know that the Nets are a veteren team and they won’t go easily. I’m hoping that this is another sweep – the Heat can always use the rest, but I don’t want to set mysef up for false expectations.

      • zoomy123 - May 7, 2014 at 8:32 AM

        I understand that Brooklyn is a veteran team, but so is Miami. In fact, when you compare the playoff experience of both teams, Miami actually comes out on top. James, Wade & Haslem have been to the NBA Finals 4x and Bosh & Allen have been there 3x. Indeed, almost half of Miami’s roster has been to the NBA Finals at least 3x; and this doesn’t even include people like Battier & Chalmers.

        Furthermore, at some point having a veteran team yields diminishing returns if the veterans are too old to be effective. KG just had his first playoff game without scoring a single point and Paul Pierce didn’t even score in double figures.

      • fanofthegame79 - May 7, 2014 at 11:06 AM

        Again, I agree with everything you’re saying. I hope you don’t think I’m arguing with you for the fact that I think this series will go 5, 6, or 7 games. What I don’t want to do – as a fan, mind you – is to get all excited about one win and start writing the Nets and this series off. I’ll be the first to tell you that I would like nothing more than to see the Heat win by 20+ points a game, and sweep each series. I like close games and all, but not when my team is playing. Close Heat games stress me out!

      • fanofthegame79 - May 11, 2014 at 1:18 AM

        This series is going to last at least five games now.

      • zoomy123 - May 11, 2014 at 2:02 AM

        I’m confused. Has 5 now become 6?

      • Kevin S. - May 7, 2014 at 8:32 AM

        No, if the Heat win their first two games, the Nets are done. This “the series doesn’t start until the road team wins” is nonsense – home teams that go up 2-0 win somewhere in the vicinity of 80% of the time. Game 2 is unquestionably a must-win for the Nets.

        I do love all the Heat fans acting like Game 1 is how the entire series will play out with neither team making any adjustments, though. That’s cute.

  17. chargerdillon - May 7, 2014 at 12:55 AM

    It’s going to be Heat vs Spurs again. Neither of these teams are just the best because of talent, they’re the best because they play as solid teams.

    Ray Allen is playing a lot better this year than last. If he’s this hot going into the Finals it could be a much easier win for the Heat than what it took them last year.

    • championmamba - May 7, 2014 at 8:22 AM

      all time frontrunning…….

    • packergator - May 7, 2014 at 9:31 AM

      Meh, I wouldn’t count out a younger Clippers team. Can you be sure about how a Chris Paul vs. Tony Parker matchup in the WCF would go?

  18. championmamba - May 7, 2014 at 8:21 AM

    the worst conference play in league history….Miami has sucked up all the elite talent, 3 superstars on one squad and Lebron James wonders why he doesn’t face any rivalries….Lebron and Wade are supposed to face each other in the playoffs but on the same squad……there’s zero competition in the east……every thing this team achieve should carry asterick behind asterick behind it………but the hype continues

    • southbeachtalent - May 7, 2014 at 8:29 AM

      Unlike the Lakers of a few years ago or the Celtics…. dumb.

      • unxpexted1 - May 7, 2014 at 8:58 AM

        How are they similar? I’m not trippin about miami like most they did what they had to do to make a championship team. But lets not compare a team of 3 guys past their primes to this Miami Heat team that legitamely has 3 superstars (except this year, not sure if you can put wade in that category anymore).

        The Lakers second best player was a career 20 and 10 guy. The Heat’s THIRD best player was a 24 and 12 guy. Again, these are no comparisons.

    • finsfan71 - May 7, 2014 at 9:18 AM

      Be sure to enjoy the championship parade when ESPN carries it live.

      *championmamba

      *=typical sports nerd crybaby

      • championmamba - May 8, 2014 at 5:01 AM

        I don’t watch fake colluded championship parades by frontrunning squads

  19. bougin89 - May 7, 2014 at 9:20 AM

    That just wasn’t a very good effort on the Nets part. They looked like an old team coming off a 7 game series with 1 day of rest…not a good look.

  20. ranfan12 - May 7, 2014 at 9:25 AM

    nets in 7 if deron hits gamewinner.

    • packergator - May 7, 2014 at 9:40 AM

      Forget Miami’s talent, they have much more playoff experience than the Raptors had, so I don’t expect Miami to have a problem with the pressure of the moment if the series should go that long.

      • ranfan12 - May 7, 2014 at 6:34 PM

        ok, nets in 5 if deron hits game winner

  21. florida727 - May 7, 2014 at 11:15 AM

    So much for that 4-0 REGULAR season record, huh?

  22. Great Caesar's Ghost - May 7, 2014 at 12:13 PM

    Heat fans, I’ll break it down for you: This means if the Heat beat Brooklyn three more times, they win the series. To win you must score more points than the other team.

    • finsfan71 - May 7, 2014 at 1:34 PM

      Oh thanks, Caesar. I can see how a flamer like yourself would be a huge fan of big guys in tight shorts. I bet you were a big Greco Roman Wrestling fan back in the day as well.

      • Great Caesar's Ghost - May 9, 2014 at 3:35 PM

        No I wasn’t. What’s a flamer?

  23. jbeagles23 - May 7, 2014 at 2:03 PM

    Remember all the talk about Brooklyn having one of the best benches when they signed kirilenko? He is terrible. When he got the ball lebron literally ran away from him to let him shoot Livingston is tall but his jump shot is not nba material and mason plumlee is a scrub who with a real coach would be in the d league

  24. bbk1000 - May 7, 2014 at 3:37 PM

    I’m tired of LeThong and his sorority sisters…..I’m hoping anybody beat them….

    • jimeejohnson - May 7, 2014 at 8:39 PM

      Is English you’re second or third language?

      • bbk1000 - May 8, 2014 at 7:27 AM

        Are you still upset that your first two user name choices, tinyjohnson and rustyjohnson were already taken?

      • bbk1000 - May 8, 2014 at 2:54 PM

        BTW….”Is English you’re second or third language?”…..

        You’re??????

        haha, look in the mirror….

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