Heat vs. Sixers -- 7:30 p.m., CSN
Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia
Sixers: 22-30 (fourth place in the Atlantic Division, ninth in the Eastern Conference)
Heat: 38-14 (first place in the Southeast Division, first in the Eastern Conference)
The Heat own 11-straight regular-season victories over the Sixers. The two teams last met on April 3 with the Heat coming away with a 99-93 home victory. Miami was without Dwyane Wade in that contest.
James scored a game-high 41 points in Miami's win, which helped the Heat clinch a playoff spot. Evan Turner scored a team-high 26 points for the Sixers.
In last season's series, the Sixers' defense was their biggest problem against the Heat. The allowed Miami to average 98.8 points on 50.2 percent shooting in four games. Miami also outrebounded the Sixers by an average of 5.8 rebounds per game.
The Sixers have dropped four of their past five games, including Wednesday's 94-87 loss to the Timberwolves. The Sixers couldn't contain a Kevin Love-less front court for the 'Wolves. Nikola Pekovic scored a game-high 27 points and grabbed a career-high 18 rebounds. For the game, the Sixers were out rebounded 62-42. The Sixers' front court combination of Spencer Hawes and Lavoy Allen couldn't equal Pekovic's output. The two combined for 17 points and 14 rebounds.
Miami is in the midst of a nine-game winning streak that includes victories over the Clippers and Thunder. On Thursday, the Heat won with their defense. They held the Bulls to 67 points on 37.3 percent shooting and forced 27 turnovers.
Evan Turner has played well the past two games. He has averaged 18.5 points, which is five points better than his season average.
LeBron James is currently in the midst of a historic season. In his past nine games, James has averaged 30.4 points on 67.8 percent shooting, 7.8 rebounds, 7.1 assists and 2.0 steals per game. On the season, he's averaging 27.2 points on 56.7% shooting. He is one of three players (Charles Barkley and Shaquille O'Neal) to do so in the last 30 years.
Sixers (season averages)