The Miami Heat are the hottest team in the NBA.
But the Tar Heels are a different story.
Miami leads the league in offensive rating, but the Tarheels are sixth in defensive rating.
Miami’s last win over a ranked team was a 99-93 win over No. 2 Virginia Tech on Dec. 14, 2019.
The Tarheel defense was so bad in that game that it forced the Hokies to go to overtime.
The team was down by six with less than two minutes left, but it couldn’t get the victory.
Tar Heels guard Trey Lyles said it was just a matter of getting the game right.
The Heat have had their ups and downs.
In the past, Miami has beaten the Seminoles and UConn Huskies.
This time, it’s been a little different.
The Hurricanes have won three of their last four games, but they’ve been outscored 50-42 over that stretch.
Miami has averaged 96.9 points per game over that span.
That’s better than the Tar Sheels average of 95.2 points per contest.
On Thursday night, Miami is in the midst of a four-game road trip to begin the season.
The trip is likely to include stops at North Carolina, Kentucky, Arizona and Kentucky.
Miami is 5-1 against the Tar Theyels this season, including a victory over Duke on Jan. 10.
The last time the two teams played was in the ACC Tournament.
The Heat (14-2, 6-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) are in the process of trying to get to No. 1 in the conference and make the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1998-99.
They’ve won six straight games, including victories over Kentucky, North Carolina and Syracuse.
They’re tied for second in the league at 8-2 against teams ranked in the top 10.
Miami has won 13 of its past 14 home games, and it will face the North Carolina Tar Hees (10-9, 6) on Friday night.
The Miami home court is also set to open Saturday.
Clemson, Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech are all in the same position as Miami, which is currently in the bottom half of the ACC standings.
Miami currently sits in seventh place in the Atlantic Coast Division with a 10-14 record.
Florida State, who plays host to Clemson on Saturday, has the league’s second-best record and the second-most wins in the East.
Derek Mason and company are 3-2 this season against Miami.
Miami and Clemson are also playing in the Carrier Dome.
Follow Tyler Gorman on Twitter at @Gorman_Totem.