Coach of the month in November, out of a job by New Year’s.

The Brooklyn Nets have elevated expectations this season, and a .500 record wasn’t good enough. Coach Avery Johnson was fired Thursday, his team having lost 10 of 13 games after a strong start to its first season in Brooklyn.

“We don’t have the same fire now than we did when we were 11-4,” General Manager Billy King said at a news conference in East Rutherford, N.J. “I tried to talk to Avery about it and we just can’t figure it out. The same pattern kept on happening.”

Assistant P.J. Carlesimo will coach the Nets on an interim basis, starting Friday night with a home game against Charlotte. King said the Nets might reach out to other candidates, but for now the job was Carlesimo’s.

The GM wouldn’t comment on a report that the team planned to get in touch with former Lakers coach Phil Jackson.

King said the decision to dismiss Johnson was made by ownership after a phone discussion Thursday morning. Owner Mikhail Prokhorov had expressed faith in Johnson before the season.

“With the direction we were going we felt we had to make a change,” King said.

Johnson was in the final year of a three-year, $12 million contract.

“It’s a really disappointing day for me and my family. It’s my wife’s birthday. It’s not a great birthday gift,” Johnson said. “I didn’t see this coming. But this is ownership’s decision. It’s part of the business.”

The Nets were embarrassed by Boston on national TV on Christmas, then were routed by Milwaukee 108-93 on Wednesday night for their fifth loss in six games.

Star guard Deron Williams recently complained about Johnson’s offense, and Nets CEO Brett Yormark took to Twitter after the loss to Celtics to voice his displeasure with the performance.

Johnson went 60-116 with the Nets. Johnson coached the Dallas Mavericks to a spot in the NBA Finals in 2006.

NBA suspends Heat’s Wade

Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade was suspended one game without pay by the NBA for flailing his leg and making contact with the groin of Charlotte Bobcats’ Ramon Sessions.

The incident happened with 8:12 left in the fourth quarter of the Heat’s 105-92 win over the Bobcats on Wednesday night. Sessions was called for a foul on the play.

Wade will serve the suspension tonight when the Heat visit the Detroit Pistons.

Around the league

Raymond Felton has returned to New York, where a decision will be made about how to treat his broken right pinky finger. The point guard flew home Thursday, a day after X-rays in Phoenix revealed the fracture. Felton speculated he might need surgery and perhaps miss a month, but no decision has been made. … Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard was fined $35,000 for a flagrant foul against Denver’s Kenneth Faried. … Lakers forward Pau Gasol has plantar fasciitis in his right foot.