Final: Miami Heat punish Brooklyn Nets, 103-73

Mike Ehrmann

The Nets couldn't hang with the Heat for very long on Wednesday.

The Nets might be the consensus pick for most-improved team this season, but they're not nearly on the Miami Heat's level. That was abundantly clear in a 103-73 blowout in Miami on Wednesday.

The Nets held a one-point lead late in the first quarter, but the Heat took control early in the second. They were up nine at the half and led by 23 at the end of the third period. It was garbage time after that. It was the Nets' worst defeat at the hands of the Heat in franchise history.

"This team shouldn't be losing by 30 to anybody," Deron Williams said. "But it's a work in progress. We can all play better. I can definitely play better and take care of the ball better. We can all play better defensively and we all know that. It's still early in the season. We're 1-2. It's not like it's time to start panicking."

"Nobody said we're on Miami's level. Nobody ever said it," Avery Johnson said, but as Stefan Bondy points out, Joe Johnson did say the Nets can beat the Heat to win a title this season. "We're definitely not there after three games in the regular season. ...So we're not there yet. But we're going to get there one day. It's going to take an enormous amount of work. We have to go through some struggles together. I'm really looking forward to seeing how our team is going to bounce back against Orlando."

The Nets shot just 39 percent from the field and just 3-for-21 from 3-point range, including 1-for-7 for Mirza Teletovic in his first extended (17) minutes. Toko Shengelia made his NBA debut, scoring two points. Williams led them with 14 points, bue he also had seven turnovers and just three assists. Kris Humphries recorded a double-double, while LeBron James came two assists shy of a triple-double for the Heat, who shot 51 percent as a team.

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