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In what’s always been considered a football town, the Heat are hotter than perhaps ever before. A pair of courtside seats to the game against Orlando sold on StubHub.com for the whopping sum of $25,884, company spokesman Glenn Lehrman said.

StubHub’s data showed that the average price for any seat was $325. For last year’s opener against New York _ and remember, the Knicks have a strong fan base in Miami with all the transplanted New Yorkers, plus are a draw because of the history between the franchises _ the average ticket price was a mere $50, Lehrman said.

And while it is a rivalry _ Orlando has won 15 of the last 20 meetings _ it’s not exactly one where players expect things to get overheated.

At least, not yet.

“It’s like Duke-Carolina,” said Carter, a proud former Tar Heels standout. “We get along with them. But we want to beat them.”

Carter didn’t spend much time during the preseason studying what Miami did, and he said he didn’t watch James‘ “The Decision” show where he picked the Heat to bring a dramatic end to a whirlwind free-agent period that saw him bid farewell to the Cleveland Cavaliers after seven seasons.

Instead, Carter thinks many players would agree with him on this point: It’s simply time for the teams to play, and at this point in the season, few words beyond that need to be said.

“I’m ready to see what we do,” Carter said.

Miami’s home fans are as well, as many will see Wade, James and Bosh together for the first time. There’s a pregame concert featuring rapper Pitbull, legendary saxophonist Clarence Clemons set to play the national anthem, and a crush of celebrities expected.

“It’s going to be hot,” Wade said.