Statement made, as the Nets finally figure out the Heat, winning 101-100

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

BROOKLYN - Tonight we said goodbye to the hype and hello to the Brooklyn Nets. No more wondering what it would look like to see five All-Stars on the court at the same time. With the "new" Nets finally in action, at home, against LeBron James and the Miami Heat. It doesn't get much bigger.

And Brooklyn played as if they had a message to send the rest of the league, showing off their depth in a 101-100 victory.

The Nets entered tonight's game having lost 13-straight games to the Heat, and starting the season 0-1, while the Heat entered coming off arguably the most embarrassing loss they'll have to face all season, losing to the tankin' Philadelphia 76ers.

Brooklyn started energized and hyped up early, which resulted in the offense forcing active turnovers and getting out on the run, something they've been saying we'll see more of this year. They also took advantage of using Brook Lopez down low against Udonis Haslem and a "smaller" front-line.

The Nets held LeBron James to about as quiet of a first half as you could hope, with a first quarter where he had as many points as he did turnovers - three.

The hype carried through most of the half, with some sloppy play masking some, at time, crisp ball movement. The teams went into the half tied 47-47.

In the second half, the Nets finally figured out the third quarter, as they rolled on offense behind Paul Pierce, Joe Johnson and Andray Blatche. The Heat, on the other hand, couldn't get anything going, struggling to get into a rhythm. LeBron looked about as mediocre as I've ever seen him.

Brooklyn carried a double-digit lead into the 4th. The only question was whether or not they could close out a team they haven't beaten in their last 13 regular season tries.

And just like that, everyone - well, almost everyone - chipped in as the Nets finally did figure out how to close on Miami. It was almost exactly how we wanted to envision it, where nine players scored at least six points and no one player on Brooklyn took more than a dozen shots from the floor. Just an all-around complete game by the Nets.

In fact, nine Nets played 19 or more minutes, compared with five on the Heat. Similarly, four of the five Heat starters played 31 or more minutes. No Nets starter played more than 31.

Sure, the Heat put a scare into them at the end, but Paul Pierce, Deron Williams and Joe Johnson closed it out. Great win.

For more on the Heat, see: Hot Hot Hoops

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