Nets Fall to Heat on Buzzer Beater, KD Exits With Thigh Contusion

B-

Final: 04/18/2021

L 107 109

The Nets pulled ahead by six points with under four minutes left, but they ended up watching Miami’s game-winner bounce in at the buzzer.

Bam Adebayo beat Brooklyn’s small lineup as the Heat secured the 109-107 victory in Miami on Sunday evening. Landry Shamet stepped up for the Nets with a career-high 30 points off the bench.

The loss stings for the Nets, but what may have further implications is how the game started. Kevin Durant exited the game after just four minutes due to a left thigh contusion. He tried to play through it but eventually checked out, grimacing from the pain.

The Heat were also without their star as Jimmy Butler dealt with an ankle sprain. It was a closely played contest as neither team led by more than seven.

Brooklyn seemed to be heating up at the right time as they built a six-point lead off a 13-0 run. Shamet was hot and the Nets seemed to have the momentum, but went ice cold from the field as they missed their last five shots and the Heat went on an 8-0 run — and Shamet did not get one look down the stretch.

The Nets took care of the ball with just 11 turnovers and scored 20 points off Miami’s 17 giveaways as the bench impressed yet again. They were hurt on second-chance points, though, as the Heat out-rebounded 16-8 them on the offensive glass and 56-45 overall.

Brooklyn largely played well and registered 26 assists on 39 field goals while shooting 47.6% from the field. They drained 17 three-pointers, thanks to Shamet, but the offense became stagnant in the closing moments of the game while the Heat answered. 

Adebayo led Miami with 21 points while Goran Dragic added 18. The Heat shot 44.2% from the field and 16-of-39 from three.

Steve Nash said that Durant is sore and that the team will see how he feels when he wakes up. It is just another blow to a Nets team that can’t seem to catch a break as of late — and the heart-breaking buzzer-beater loss adds to it.

Next up: Brooklyn’s schedule stays busy with a meeting against the Pelicans on Tuesday. The team can’t afford more bad news before then.

Landry Shamet

A

The stats: 30 PTS, 10-15 FG, 7-12 3PT, 3-4 FT, 2 REB, 3 AST, 1 TO, 37 MIN

What a performance from Landry Shamet.

Shamet nearly single-handedly willed Brooklyn to victory. He hit back-to-back three-pointers in the corner to pull the Nets up six with under four minutes remaining — but he got no looks after that.

Shamet stepped up once KD exited the game, and he continued his recent impressive play — especially from distance. He has been so important to Brooklyn amid an ever-changing roster, and he gave the Nets a shot at victory on Sunday.

Kyrie Irving

B-

The stats: 20 PTS, 6-19 FG, 2-9 3PT, 6-6 FT, 4 REB, 9 AST, 2 BLK, 2 STL, 4 TO, 37 MIN

Kyrie just did not have it in the final minutes.

Kyrie tried to keep Brooklyn afloat down the stretch but missed his final three shots, including the Nets’ final possession before Miami’s game-winning shot. Some looks were tightly contested as he got a lot of defensive attention, but other looks were maybe better opportunities for others — such as Shamet — to get a look.

On top of that, Kyrie could not get his three-ball to go down. He nearly registered a double-double while running an efficient offense, particularly in KD’s stead, but it was ultimately not his — or Brooklyn’s — night.

Joe Harris

B

The stats: 12 PTS, 5-12 FG, 2-9 3PT, 2 REB, 3 AST, 1 STL, 33 MIN

Joe could not follow up his hot performance from Friday

Shamet took the reigns as the hot three-point shooter, while the Nets could have used a few more makes from Joe. The loss does not fall on his shoulders, as he got some good hustle plays and provided good looks while avoiding pressure on the perimeter.

Joe also had a great dish to Shamet on his seventh three-pointer of the game. Joe continued to help make things happen but just needed a few more shots to fall.

Bruce Brown

B+

The stats: 8 PTS, 4-7 FG, 0-1 3PT, 0-2 FT, 11 REB, 2 AST, 2 STL, 1 BLK, 1 TO, 30 MIN

Bruce nearly notched a double-double as he stepped up on the glass.

Bruce picked up an important role as the Nets opted to go small often against Miami. He played a key part for second chances as he grabbed five of the team’s eight offensive boards on the evening.

Bruce was active on both ends of the court and played well in the starting lineup, but the Nets could have overall used more size. Bruce’s gritty play was ultimately not enough as the offense became stagnant down the stretch.

Kevin Durant

A-

The stats: 8 PTS, 3-3 FG, 2-2 3PT, 0-2 FT, 1 REB, 1 BLK, 4 MIN

KD had a great start — then the injury came.

Durant had two quick three-pointers in his lone four minutes on the evening. He seemed to be kneed in the thigh on a drive to the rim and was not the same after.

Kudos to KD for trying to play through it, but health is the ultimate goal for Brooklyn. The Nets hope his potential absence is not long, and maybe that James Harden will become available in the meantime. 

News from Around NYC