The excitement from the Brooklyn Nets winning their first-ever game at the Barclays Center quickly disappeared Monday when they lost to the short-handed Minnesota Timberwolves despite a 22-point second half lead.
The good news for head coach Avery Johnson and his players is they didn't have to sit around and sulk while getting hit with a snow storm. Instead they were able to take their talents to South Beach! The bad news is they have to play the defending champion Miami Heat while they are there.
When you are reeling from an embarrassing loss and trying to get things back on track, you don't want to have to try and do it against the best player in the planet. And so far this season LeBron James has shown no signs of being anything other than just as good or better than he was last year during his MVP campaign.
Miami are the highest scoring team in the league through four games, averaging 121 points per game, with James leading the way with 23 points to go along with 9.3 rebounds and five assists. Not too shabby for a team that still gets every team's best shot night in and night out as they are clearly the favorite to once again win it all.
While stopping the Heat will be a tall task for the Nets, they should be able to keep up offensively, something that was never an option last season. Miami has given up at least 99 points in all four games and will have to try and find a way to account for center Brook Lopez inside. After an impressive 27-point effort in the opener, Lopez was frustrated when the Wolves held him to just 13 points on 5-for-15 shooting.
Deron Williams (18.5 ppg) and Joe Johnson (16.5) have both shown what they can do in Johnson's offensive system, but Brooklyn will once again be without swingman Gerald Wallace thanks to a bum ankle.
You can watch all the action against the defending champs locally on YES or listen on WFAN with tip scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
Next up for the Nets is a home-and-home series with the Orlando Magic starting on Friday night.
Wednesday, Nov 7, 2012, 7:30 PM EST