Heat Check: Heat take care of Nets with ease in Game 1

MIAMI — So much for Brooklyn’s regular-season success against Miami.

LeBron James scored 22 points and Ray Allen added 19 off the bench to help the Miami Heat dominate the Brooklyn Nets 107-86 in Game 1 of their best-of-seven Eastern Conference semifinal series Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena.

Game 2 will be Thursday night in Miami.

Brooklyn, which needed seven games to beat Toronto in the first round, won the four regular-season meetings with the Heat — three by a point each and the other in double-overtime.

Undone by poor late-game execution against Brooklyn during the season, Miami took control in the third quarter of Game 1 and refused to wilt.

Chris Bosh had 15 points and 11 rebounds and Dwyane Wade added 14 points for Miami, which had five double-figure scorers.

Shane Battier, who played little more than two minutes in Miami’s first-round sweep of Charlotte, started in place of Udonis Haslem as Brooklyn went with a small lineup by starting Shaun Livingston to join Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett.

Bosh defended Garnett, Battier was on Pierce and James opposed Johnson.

Battier finished with eight points, including two of four from 3-point territory. Allen hit six of 10 shots overall, including four of seven from behind the arc.

Neither team was shy about taking 3-pointers. Miami hit nine of 23 and Brooklyn was 10 of 24.

Johnson and Williams each had 17 to pace Brooklyn.

The Heat led by as many as 11 during the first half but held a 46-43 halftime edge.

THE TURNING POINT

A 15-2 third-quarter run that built a 70-54 Miami cushion with 4:05 left in the period. The Heat never led by fewer than 13 points in the fourth quarter.

THE DIFFERENCE MAKER

Allen, who besides his scoring had four rebounds and three assists in his 26 minutes.

STAT OF THE GAME

The Heat outscored the Nets 52-28 in the paint.

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WHAT’S NEXT

The Heat and Nets will ply Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series at 7 p.m. Thursday night.

You can follow Charlie McCarthy on Twitter @mccarthy_chas or email him at mac1763@bellsouth.net.