The Los Angeles Lakers were locked in, focused, and again ready to respond after a tough loss.
They used a stunning second quarter to effectively put the game out of reach, where they outscored the Miami Heat 36-16 after taking away any paint scoring thanks to dominant defense from Anthony Davis.
It’s hard to describe just how badly the Heat were beaten. For the first time in the NBA Finals, and perhaps the entire 2020 playoffs, Miami looked like they had the fight knocked out of them. They finally ran out of gas.
The Lakers, on the other hand, once again got big scoring contributions from their role players. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope had 17 points and Rajon Rondo chipped in 19 of his own.
Those efforts buoyed another solid night from the Lakers’ superstar duo. LeBron James had his 11th career Finals triple-double with 28 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists. Davis had 19 points, 15 rebounds, three assists, a steal, and two blocks.
Goran Dragic had a chance to play in Game 6 after missing four games but was largely ineffective. Jimmy Butler also looked tired on the floor, putting up 12 points, seven rebounds, and eight assists. Bam Adebayo was the only one who had a good game with 25 points,10 rebounds, and five assists.
The Lakers earned the title with this blowout victory. No one will be able to complain about officiating, especially since the margin of victory was so large at 106-93 – which only got that close during garbage time.
James put another exclamation point on his glittering career, and one still has to wonder when he’ll finally start to slow down. Few players can claim winning a title with three different teams, and even fewer can say they did so as the Finals MVP of every championship squad. It was a close call between him and Davis this year, but it’s hard to argue that James didn’t deserve the Bill Russell trophy.
Four years after returning home to Cleveland and bringing them their first and only NBA title, he’s now brought one of the NBA’s most storied franchises back to the promised land.
Davis, on the other hand, has now won his first ring, vindicating his decision to demand a trade out of New Orleans. He looks primed to take the torch from James in a year or two as the alpha dog on the Lakers.
The Heat were the only team to take two games from the Lakers in any postseason series, so you’ve got to give them credit for their effort. They’ll always wonder what could have been if Dragic and Bam Adebayo didn’t get hurt in Game 1, but we’ll never know. Now it’s back to the drawing board.