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Saturday, December 1, 2012
Rapid Reaction: Heat 102, Nets 89

By Mike Mazzeo

WHAT IT MEANS: The Brooklyn Nets gave the Miami Heat fits early -- then ran out of gas late.

Bidding to move into the No. 1 spot in the Eastern Conference for the first time since April 12, 2003 the Nets blew a 14-point second-quarter lead and saw their five-game winning streak end with a 102-89 loss to the Heat on Saturday night at American Airlines Arena.

The Nets (11-5), who were playing their fifth game in seven nights, scored just three points in the first 8:36 of the fourth quarter and have lost to the Heat (12-3, 8-0 home) 12 consecutive times.

LeBron James (21 points, nine rebounds, six assists) increased his overall winning streak against the Nets to 16. Dwyane Wade added a game-high 34 points and seven assists.

STATS UGLY: The Nets were outscored 52-30 in the second half. Overall, they went 6-for-28 from 3-point range and committed 18 turnovers. Similar stats from when the Heat blew them out by 30 on Nov. 7.

They did play extremely well for about 2 1/2 quarters, feeding off their defense with wonderful ball movement on offense. They just couldn’t sustain it the entire 48 minutes.

CARVED UP: The Nets had held their previous five opponents under 90 points, but Miami carved them up for 102 points on 51.3 percent shooting.

D-WILL: As per usual, Deron Williams couldn’t shoot from the outside (3-for-11, 33.3 percent in his previous nine games), but still managed to pick up his team-leading seventh double-double of the season -- 10 points and 12 assists. For those that love watching a point guard pass the ball, D-Will certainly put on a show. Williams banged his left knee at the 4:57 mark of the fourth, but stayed in the game.

NO SHOW FOR JOE: Joe Johnson is glad the Nets don’t have to play in Miami again during the regular season. In two games there, Johnson went 9-for-28 from the field.

ZERO HERO: Andray Blatche chose the Nets over the Heat in the offseason. Brooklyn is glad he did. Starting in place of Brook Lopez (sprained right foot) for a second straight game, Blatche finished with a team-high 20 points and eight rebounds in 34 minutes. Blatche’s counterpart, Chris Bosh, struggled (eight points and two rebounds in 30 minutes).

T’D UP: Avery Johnson picked up his first technical of the season for arguing a questionable foul call on Keith Bogans in the fourth quarter.

HERE COME THE HEAT: The Heat turned up their intensity defensively in the third quarter, using a 10-0 run to take their first lead of the game, 75-73. They ended up closing the quarter on a 17-6 run and outscoring the Nets 32-19 in the third.

LOCKER LEAD: The Nets outscored the Heat 59-50 in the first half because they outrebounded them 22-11 and led in second-chance points 13-3.

PERFECTION: The Nets used an 11-0 run to take a 24-16 lead after the first quarter, a quarter in which James had more fouls (two) than points (one).

UP NEXT: Nets vs. Thunder on Tuesday night.