The game is also being broadcasted on ABC.
The Knicks-Heat series is by many accounts the most anticipated of all the first round series. Both teams feature a lot of star power, but the Heat are the big favorites going into Game 1 in Miami. The Heat put together the second best record in the Eastern Conference during the season and are the Vegas favorites to go to the NBA Finals.
We're all looking forward to the challenge again, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said Friday. And what we did was recommit to an unknowable future. There's more than a handful of teams that feel exactly like us right now, that feel like they have a legitimate chance to contend for a title.
The Heat won all three games between the two teams during the regular season and might get a Knicks team without star center Tyson Chandler in Game 1, who is sick with the flu.
If Chandler is out on Saturday, it will put even more pressure on Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony to carry the load. He'll not only have to put up a lot of points in each game, but also could get the assignment of covering LeBron James on defense.
Anytime you're going against great players, you always want to bring your best game,'' Anthony told reporters on Friday. Right now it's a seven-game series. I'm going to have to bring it. It's not an individual matchup between me and LeBron. It's Miami versus the Knicks. My mindset, my goal is to win the series.
This will be a big series for me to get and for us to get. We're excited about this series. Everyone's excited. You can just see the focus guys have today and the last couple of days preparing.''
This is the first time the two teams have met in the playoffs since 2000, though there has been talk about a playoff matchup all year. In December Knicks forward Amar'e Stoudemire told reporters that the Knicks were hunting the Heat this year. They'll get their chance to knock off the heavy favorites on Saturday night.