After a thrilling victory over the Los Angeles Clippers, the San Antonio Spurs (55-17) will host the Miami Heat (57-15) in San Antonio for an Easter Sunday treat in what could be a preview of the 2013 NBA Finals.
This will be the final regular season meeting between the Spurs and Heat. However, the Spurs will be without Manu Ginobili who is nursing a strained right hamstring suffered during the Clippers game.
The Spurs and Heat's first meeting was not without its controversy. Prior to the game in Miami, Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich sent Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Danny Green back to San Antonio citing rest. Needless to say, it did not go over well with Commissioner David Stern who fined the Spurs and Popovich for the roster move.
Despite not having their star players, the Heat narrowly escaped with a 105-100 win over the Spurs. Gary Neal led San Antonio with 20 points and 7 assists off the bench while Miami was led by LeBron James, who finished with 23 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists and 4 steals.
The Spurs are coming off a thrilling 104-102 win over th Clippers in San Antonio. Duncan finished with 34 points, 11 boards, and 3 assists in 32 minutes including the game-winning shot and the "and 1" to seal the win for the Spurs.
The Heat are coming off a 108-89 win over the Hornets in New Orleans. LeBron James finished with 36 points to lead Miami to the road win.
And as the Spurs and Heat get set for a battle of the two top teams in their respective conferences, here are five things to watch for during the game.
• Spurs' Parker is averaging 21.8 points, 7.8 assists, 3.0 rebounds while shooting 52% from the field and 86% from the free-throw line since his return from ankle injury.
• Miami is 24-5 against the Western Conference this season.
• Miami is 26-1 this season when their bench outscores the opponents bench.
• Miami is 34-2 this season when shooting at least 50% from the field.
• Miami is 45-3 when leading after the third quarter this season.