Rapid Reaction: Heat 107, Nets 86

The Brooklyn Nets' regular-season dominance over the Miami Heat is nothing more than ancient history now.

The Nets were outclassed by the two-time defending champions in a 107-86 blowout loss in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals on Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena.

What it means: Going into this best-of-seven series, the general consensus was that while the Nets were the underdogs, they could give the Heat problems. For a half, Brooklyn went toe-to-toe with Miami.

Then, with 7:13 remaining in the third quarter, the game turned. Andray Blatche missed a point-blank layup that would’ve brought the Nets within 56-54, and the Heat countered with a 14-2 run to take a 70-54 lead with 4:05 left in the third. Miami outscored Brooklyn 33-23 in the quarter.

The Nets needed to instill some fear in the Heat -- at the very least showing that they should be taken seriously. So much for that. Game 2 is basically a must-win, because the Nets don’t want to be down 2-0 heading back to Brooklyn.

Miami, showing no signs of rust after its long eight-day layoff, coasted in the fourth quarter. Nets coach Jason Kidd rested his starters in the fourth, essentially waiving the white flag.

The difference: The Heat outscored the Nets 52-28 in the paint. Miami made it a point to attack from the beginning, while Brooklyn settled for way too many perimeter jumpers.

Brooklyn’s backcourt shows up: Deron Williams (17 points) and Joe Johnson (17 points) were efficient and productive offensively, combining to shoot 14-for-21 from the field. Williams, who received a pair of injections in his left ankle prior to Game 6 of the team’s first-round series, was moving really well and hit a pair of long buzzer-beating 3-pointers at the end of the second and third quarters. Johnson had eight points in the second quarter, and the Nets trailed 46-43 at the half.

Can’t contain the King: The Nets put a myriad of defenders on LeBron James, but it didn’t matter. He was unstoppable. James shot 10-for-15 from the field, scored 22 points and added five rebounds and three assists. He became the youngest player in NBA history to score 4,000 career playoff points.

Stats ugly: The Heat shot 56.8 percent from the field. Ray Allen (19 points), Chris Bosh (15 points), Dwyane Wade (14 points) and Mario Chalmers (12 points) also scored in double figures.

12-14: Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce were non-factors and fell to 12-14 in their careers against archrival James in the playoffs. Pierce (eight points, six rebounds) hit a couple 3-pointers early before disappearing, while Garnett went scoreless in 16 minutes for the first time in his playoff career. Garnett’s backups provided nothing behind him. Blatche and Mason Plumlee were 2-for-7 from the field.

Up next: Game 2 on Thursday night (7 p.m.)