(Sports Network) - Two of the NBA's elite teams meet on Thursday night when
the defending champion Miami Heat host the San Antonio Spurs at
The Heat have not played since a home win Saturday against the Cleveland
Cavaliers. Miami owns a four-game winning streak and has captured eight of its
The Heat are a perfect 6-0 at home for the first time in franchise history and
their 10-3 start matched a club best. They are the second-best scoring team in
the league and will be well-rested.
The Spurs will wrap up a six-game road swing with the Heat game and have gone
5-0 to this point. They are 9-1 outside of San Antonio this season and come in
third in scoring in the NBA.
Something will have to give on Thursday.
This could easily be a preview of the NBA Finals, but for now, fans and
players will have to settle for two great teams monopolizing the NBA's focus
for a night.
"Both franchises are championship franchises, always working toward being a
championship franchise, on and off the floor, each and every year," Miami's
LeBron James said after practice on Wednesday. "That's definitely great to be
a part of."
The Spurs defeated the Orlando Magic 110-89 on Wednesday. Gary Neal got the
start for San Antonio with injuries to Kawhi Leonard and Stephen Jackson and
contributed 19 points, but it was Manu Ginobili who really carried the Spurs
Ginobili went 6-for-9 from the 3-point line and added two free throws for 20
points in a little over 23 minutes. Tim Duncan had 15 and Tony Parker chipped
"Our offense has been clicking," Parker said. "We've been sharing the ball
The Spurs have averaged 111.0 ppg during this trip.
The Heat aren't one of the league's premiere defensive teams, allowing 100.31
ppg. Miami has surrendered over 100 points in five of its last seven outings,
but went 5-2 during that stretch.
On Saturday, the Heat had a tougher-than-expected time with the Kyrie Irving-
less Cavs. Ray Allen drained the go-ahead 3-pointer with 18.2 seconds left to
give them the 110-108 win.
James was his usual awesome self with 30 points on 10-for-16 shooting, six
rebounds and five assists. He did have seven turnovers. Chris Bosh, who is
averaging 23.7 ppg over the his last three, had 23 and Dwyane Wade helped with
18. Saturday marked the 55th time Miami's version of the Big Three went over
The Spurs are 6-3 in their last nine against the Heat, but lost their last two
trips to South Beach.
The Sports Network