Heat Check: No sweep this time for Miami after losing in Game 3

Charlie McCarthy breaks down what happened in Game 3, as the Miami Heat struggled in the third quarter and fell to the Brooklyn Nets for their first loss of these playoffs.

Charlie McCarthy breaks down what happened in Game 3, as the Miami Heat struggled in the third quarter and fell to the Brooklyn Nets for their first loss of these playoffs.

The Miami Heat lost a game and any chance of earning a second straight playoff series sweep on Saturday night.

The Brooklyn Nets, desperately trying to avoid falling behind 3-0 in the series, outscored Miami 26-14 in the third quarter to open a comfortable lead en route to a 104-90 win in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals at the Barclays Center.

The series will continue with Game 4 on Monday night, when the Heat will be trying to take a commanding 3-1 advantage before returning to Miami for Game 5 on Wednesday night.

"This is our first loss of the postseason," center Chris Bosh said. "I think it comes at a good time. We just have to regroup."

The Heat trailed 51-49 at halftime but then fell behind as Brooklyn played tremendous interior defense and held Miami to 5-of-19 shooting in the third quarter. The Nets hit 11 of 18 shots in the period.

"The third quarter was the deciding factor for us," LeBron James said. "We scored 14 points and we allowed them to get whatever they wanted."

Miami, which swept Charlotte in the first round, fell behind by as many as 20 points late in the fourth quarter.

"We were in a good enough flow in the first half and then really probably tried to win the game more offensively in the second half," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "To sum it up, they outplayed us. They outplayed us in the whole second half."

James scored 28 points, 16 in the first quarter. Dwyane Wade added 20 points.

Brooklyn hit 15 of 25 attempts from 3-point range. Miami was eight of 24.

"When they get 15 3s, you cant give them other things," Wade said. "It seemed they got it all tonight."

Joe Johnson sank five of seven from behind the arc, and Mirza Teletovic four of seven. Teletovic hit six of nine from long distance in Game 2.

The Nets outrebounded the Heat 43-27.

Brooklyn's Kevin Garnett, who had four points total in the series' first two games, had 10 points and seven rebounds.

The Heat shot 45.6 percent (31 of 68) overall, and the Nets 52.8 percent (38 of 72). Miami had just 13 assists to Brooklyn's 26.

"Thirteen assists will not get it done," Spoelstra said.

THE TURNING POINT

Brooklyn's 9-0 run that built a 68-56 cushion with 5:01 left in the third quarter.

THE DIFFERENCE MAKER

Joe Johnson scored 19 points, including 15 from 3-point range.

STAT OF THE GAME

The Nets' bench outscored Miami's 40-25. The Heat's bench points included three treys from James Jones in the final 4:41.

WHAT'S NEXT

The Heat and Nets will play Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series in Brooklyn at 8 p.m. Monday night.

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