The confidence is there from both sides. One side can actually back it up.

In advance of Sunday's 7 p.m. opener in the best-of-seven first-round playoff series between the Miami Heat and Milwaukee Bucks, there is no shortage of belief.

The Heat, of course, enter coming off victories in 37 of their final 39 games of the regular season.

The Bucks? They head into Sunday's game with losses in 12 of their last 16.

And yet there was Bucks point guard Brandon Jennings at a Thursday charity event in Milwaukee saying, "I'm real confident. I'm sure everybody is writing us off, but I see us winning the series in six. . . . There's no pressure on us!"

There was plenty in response at Friday's Heat practice at AmericanAirlines Arena.

"When Joe Namath predicted the Super Bowl win, that took the cake," forward Shane Battier said. "Everyone else should just give up."

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, as expected, wanted no part of the discussion.

"Look, we've been through everything, players making comments in the media, fans, media predictions," he said. "This thing will be decided between those four lines and you can't hide from it."

Guard Dwyane Wade said after coming up short in the 2011 NBA Finals and then winning last season's championship, the Heat are beyond bulletin-board material.

"We've got enough motivation in this team," he said. "We have a big goal in mind, what we want to do. We're put together to win a championship. We're not put together to make the playoffs.

"We don't need any motivation from headlines or what a guy says. A guy is supposed to have confidence in his team."