1. Lebron Watch
Coming off a game in which the Heat lost and LeBron didn’t shoot much after a dominating first quarter, you can only expect him to turn it up for Game 4. Brooklyn did a good job keeping him in check for the last three quarters in the last game, making only two baskets in the last three periods. However, The King did end the game with 28. Throughout the series the Nets have held LeBron to under 30 points in three games, but LeBron is shooting 56% this season and the only effective way to stop him would be to keep him from taking shots. So the first key is to keep the ball out of LeBron’s hands as much as possible.
2. Bench Points
It isn’t any secret that Brooklyn has a much deeper bench than the Miami Heat and one of the deepest in the league, but the Nets need to continue seeing their bench points go up in order for them to compete with the juggernaut that is the Miami Heat. Mirza Teletovic and Andray Blatche both put up over double digit points off the bench in Game 3 coming up big for an older Brooklyn team that needs more rest than the Miami Heat. Mirza Teletovic made four of Brooklyn’s 15 3-pointers on the night and Andray Blatche saw career playoff highs with 15 points and 10 rebounds. For Brooklyn to continue to pose a threat to this Miami team they need to see more production from the bench.
3. Spread The Love
The Nets shot 60% from behind the arc Saturday night and were 52% from the field. Nothing is more important in a basketball game than simply making shots, but players can make it easier on each other by spreading the ball around and finding the open man. The Nets need to slow a Heat team that is very good in transition basketball by slowing them down, passing the ball around and finding the open man.
4. Deron Williams?
The reason that there is a question mark after the former is because many people haven’t seen Deron Williams this playoff season. He is like watching a glitch in a game one minute he’s there and the next he’s something else. Deron Williams needs to take the shot when he drives to the basket instead of always looking to kick it out. More times than not he throws the ball away allowing Miami to go into transition leading the Nets into foul trouble and leading the Heat to easy baskets. For the Nets to succeed D-Will needs to stop questioning himself and take the shot when he has it.
5. A Change In Game Plan?
Two leading players of their respective teams have called out their coaches this week in regards to making a change in their game plans. LeBron James mentioned the need to give James Jones more minutes in the series after a solid performance in the Bobcats series. Paul Pierce called out Jason Kidd to put him up against LeBron. If the coaches take the advice the series may turn up yet another notch. For the Nets though, Paul Pierce isn’t asking his coach to put him into a situation that he hasn’t been in before. A situation he actually hasn’t done bad in. Paul Pierce is still a top player on the Nets defensive side of the ball and isn’t afraid to take a shot of the bull rush that is LeBron James.
PureSportsNY: Bobby O’Hara