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Thursday, January 2nd (All times Eastern)

Golden State Warriors (20-13) at Miami Heat (24-7), 7:30 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Miami Heat return to South Beach, although briefly, to face a stiff challenge from the red-hot Golden State Warriors on Thursday night.

The Heat, who went 3-1 on a west-coast trip with victories in their last two, welcome a Warriors team that has won six straight and is on game three of a seven-game road odyssey.

"It's going to be a team effort, defensively," said LeBron James. "The volume of shots they take, you can't stop them. We understand that. We can't get down on ourselves defensively."

James celebrated his 29th birthday on Monday night with 26 points and 10 assists to lead the Heat to a 97-94 win over the Denver Nuggets from Pepsi Center.

Chris Bosh scored 17 points on the heels of his Eastern Conference Player of the Week honor, while Ray Allen added 13 points off the bench in the win, Miami's eighth victory in its last nine tilts.

Dwyane Wade netted 12 points, but left early in the third quarter with back spasms and did not return.

"They are a very, very good team, especially at home," said James. "It was good that we were able to get this win."

The Warriors' streak reached six games with a 94-81 victory over the Orlando Magic on Tuesday. They've won three in a row as the visitor, but have a long way to go before they see the Bay Area again. The Warriors will visit Atlanta, Washington, Milwaukee and Brooklyn on this trip.

David Lee scored a game-high 22 points and had nine rebounds to lead Golden State to the win. Klay Thompson scored 15 and Kent Bazemore added 12 points for the Warriors. Marreese Speights contributed 10 points and six rebounds.

Steph Curry had a slow night with just nine points on 4-for-10 shooting. He chipped in eight assists and five rebounds, while Andrew Bogut pulled down a game-high 11 boards.

This recent run has sent the Warriors to within a game of the Los Angeles Clippers in the Pacific Division.

But nothing presents the kind of problem the Heat do.

"They're the best in the world," Jackson told the team's website. "It's going to be a tough challenge. This is a team that creates a lot of problems. But, we're looking forward to it."

The two squads split last season's two matchups with the visitor prevailing each time. Golden State's win in South Beach on Dec. 12, 2013 snapped a three- game losing streak in Miami.

01/02 10:18:41 ET

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    Wednesday at 9:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: NC State at Georgia Tech

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Arkansas at Florida

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Waste Management Phoenix Open

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  • HSBB: Broughton at Leesville Road

    Tuesday at 7:00 pm on 620am

  • NHL: Hurricanes vs. Tampa Bay

    Tuesday at 7:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • ACC: Duke at Notre Dame

    Wednesday at 7:30 pm on 620am

  • ACC: NC State vs. Clemson

    Wednesday at 9:00 pm on WRAL-FM

Scoreboard
Local
Final
STJ 68
DUKE 77
Final
NCSU 78
ND 81
Final
CHI 84
MIA 96
Final
CLE 108
OKC 98
Final
NOP 109
DAL 106
Final
ORL 99
IND 106
Final
PHO 100
LAC 120
Final
ATL 112
MIN 100
Final
TOR 114
DET 110
 
Final
SAN 101
MIL 95
Final
GSW 114
BOS 111
Final
DEN 115
WAS 117
4th
LAL 74
HOU 89
 
Final
UCONN 66
SFLA 53
Final
GT 62
BC 64
Final
VT 47
UVA 50
Final
OSU 82
IND 70
Final
UCF 46
CIN 56
Final
WICHS 74
DRAK 40
Final
STJ 68
DUKE 77
Final
MAR 73
FAIR 67
 
Final
HART 61
MAINE 70
 
Final
MAN 71
MON 64
 
Final
PRIN 96
ROWAN 48
 
Final
SIENA 55
PETE 69
 
Final
RIU 53
BONA 48
Final
BING 54
USB 61
 
Final
MLOWELL 50
VERM 61
 
Final
BUT 77
SHU 57
Final
SALA 55
YALE 72
 
Final
PITT 68
LOU 80
Final
ILLST 53
NIOWA 54
Final
GTDNS 69
UMBC 55
 
Final
IONA 87
NIAG 64
 
Final
TENST 55
BEL 63
 
Final
NCSU 78
ND 81
Final
VILL 71
CREI 50
Final
MD 68
NW 67
Final
UTAH 77
WASH 56
Final
TEAMFOLI 12
TEAMTOEWS 17
Final
CARTER 28
IRVIN 32