By Michael LeDuc @mike_leduc on May 5, 2014
In the second round of the NBA Playoffs, the Miami Heat and Brooklyn Nets square off in what should be a vastly entertaining series. The Heat are the clear favorite, but here are five reasons why the Nets have a chance to take down the defending champions.
If there is anything that gives the Heat problems, it is size. The Nets happen to have plenty at their disposal at all positions. Kevin Garnett anchors the defense at 6-foot-11, and Andray Blatche and Mason Plumlee, both 6-foot-11, should cause problems inside. Joe Johnson, Shaun Livingston , Andrei Kirilenko and Deron Williams are also lengthy for their respective positions. Brooklyn's size will certainly keep Miami's hands full.
Another factor the Heat struggle against is a talented point guard. Williams did not do well against the Heat over the course of the season, but his scoring ability coupled with his play making will be a major concern for the Heat. Point guards like Rajon Rondo and Tony Parker have been able to rattle the Heat in the past. Williams needs to be on the top of his game in this series.
There are many reasons why the Nets went 4-0 against the Heat this season. One reason is that they match up extremely well with Miami. Garnett contains Chris Bosh, Williams overpowers Mario Chalmers and Joe Johnson's size and power cause problems for Dwyane Wade. Livingston uses his length and quickness to beat out Miami's frontcourt. LeBron James is nearly unstoppable, but Paul Pierce and the Nets' defense is up for the challenge.
KG and Pierce are not what they used to be, but this is their fifth playoff series against LeBron and their third against this Heat team. Each time, Pierce and KG led the Celtics and pushed LeBron and company to the brink. Pierce never backs down from LeBron and Garnett makes it tough for him to score inside. Now that they have other star-players to help out, they have an even better chance of finally beating the Heat.
The Nets are 4-0 against the Heat this season and have confidence that they can beat the Heat any time and any place, including Miami. Brooklyn has the right formula to beat the Heat: experience, depth, size, a star point guard and plenty of talent. The Nets have Miami's number, and that will translate to winning this series and annihilating Miami's "three-peat" hopes.
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