The Miami Heat are going to embarrass a lot of teams this season. They are the defending champs, and they are entering their peak. It's very likely they're going to win multiple championships over the next few years; there is no shame in losing to them. But you'll forgive the Nets if they're feeling a bit wounded and wobbly this morning, regardless.
Miami jumped all over Brooklyn last night, destroying the Nets 103–73 in a game that wasn't even really all that close. There's a certain point at which one can tell already when Miami decides "Okay, let's win now so we can take the fourth quarter off," and that happened early in the third last night. LeBron James only missed a triple-double because they took him out so early; he only played 30 minutes. The Nets saw four minutes of Jorts Harrellson. It was that sort of night.
The Nets did themselves no favors, shooting 3-for-21 from three-point range and turning the ball over nineteen times. The Nets were without Gerald Wallace, who might have at least slowed James down a bit, but Joe Johnson had a particularly rough game, too, going 4-for-14 from the field and also playing old Iso Joe a ton. Basically, the Nets looked like they didn't have the talent to match up with the Heat — but worse, like they couldn't figure out how to play together. Over the last five quarters of basketball — this game and that horrid fourth quarter against the Timberwolves — the Nets have looked the way everyone thought the Knicks would play.
Brooklyn is now 1-2 and begins a home-and-home with Orlando tomorrow night, visiting the Magic on Friday and hosting them on Sunday. Orlando has been feistier than people had thought the first week of the season, but these are games that, theoretically, the Nets should win. Eventually the initial excitement will pass and the Nets will have to win games. The Magic should help that. One would hope.