PHILADELPHIA -- Brett Brown called it.
The 76ers coach knew his squad was facing the Miami Heat at the wrong time. The two-time defending NBA champions were coming off their first three-game losing streak in two seasons. In those setbacks, Miami was uncharacteristically awful on defense.
"You are getting a very talented, angry team that's going to go up many, many levels defensively," Brown said before Friday night's 101-86 setback to the Heat. "And that is going to be a real test for our young team, because we lead the league in turnovers already.
"We are going to be faced with an angry team ... that rolls out a bunch of thoroughbreds that are going to make us pay if we are not smart."
And boy, did they make the Sixers pay.
The Heat's 15-point victory at Wells Fargo Center was more lopsided than the final margin indicated.
You knew it was a bad night for the home team when Heat reserve Ray Allen, whose is usually landlocked, had a fastbreak dunk in the second quarter. Then you knew things were really bad when Spencer Hawes missed a dunk late in the quarter. And you knew the Sixers (13-26) were destined to get blown out when Hawes (2 for 9), Thad Young (1 for 9) and Michael Carter-Williams (0 for 4) combined to shoot 3 for 22 in the first half.
Yes, it was one of those nights for the home team, which has lost five of six games.
The Sixers made just 2 of 20 three-point attempts, shot 36.9 percent from the field, committed 23 turnovers and had 12 shots blocked.
"They did what they do," Brown said afterward of the Heat's defense. "We know we had a hard time scoring inside. We missed a lot of shots inside."
They also missed a lot of free throws, going 22 of 37.
The Heat (28-11) led by as many as 25 points twice in the third quarter. The second time came when Dwyane Wade's layup made it a 79-54 contest with 3 minutes, 40 seconds left in the quarter. The Sixers sat their starters in the fourth quarter.
Miami center Chris Bosh had a game high 23 points and five blocks. LeBron James added 21 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds. The reigning league MVP scored 10 of his points in the fourth quarter.
Carter-Williams, however, had one of his worst games as a Sixer. He finished with seven points on 1-for-7 shooting and committed a game-high five turnovers.
"I think they were changing up the defense, a lot," said the rookie point guard, who had 22 points, 12 assists, nine steals and seven rebounds in Oct. 30's victory over the Heat. "Last time, they were really hard hedging. This time, they mixed it up. I got confused sometimes. I just got to learn from it."
Hawes finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds, but made just 5 of 14 shots. Young added 10 points on 3 for 13 shooting.
Sixers reserve Lavoy Allen missed his fourth consecutive game due to an injury.
The post player, who had been sidelined with a strained right calf, felt pain in his left knee while sprinting before Wednesday's game against the Charlotte Bobcats. The 6-foot-9, 255-pounder's knee pain comes from a previous injury that sidelined him in the preseason.
He said the "plan" is to return Saturday night at the Chicago Bulls.
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