Game 3 was one of the most disappointing games the LA Lakers have played in this year’s playoffs.
Despite having a complete roster and coming off of a big win in Game 2, the best basketball team in Los Angeles played poorly and were outplayed for four quarters by the undermanned yet very inspired Miami Heat, 104-115.
Although the Lakers had great help from their role players like Kyle Kuzma and Markieff Morris, who had 19 and 18 points off the bench, and Alex Caruso who chipped in eight points as well, the whole squad failed to match the intensity and the energy of Miami.
Anthony Davis didn’t help their case as well as he had a very poor game by his Finals MVP candidate standards with only 15 points and five rebounds with five turnovers. He also only attempted nine shots and made six.
LeBron James led the LA squad with 25 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists.
The Lakers had its hands full with the big game by Jimmy Butler, who dropped 40 points, 11 rebounds, 13 assists, two steals and two blocks to keep Miami within striking distance despite missing Bam Adebayo and Goran Dragic due to injury.
However, despite the horrible game of Los Angeles, based off the stats in this year’s playoffs, Game 4 will be another LA show in the bubble.
In the first round of the playoffs against the Portland Trailblazers, the Lakers dished out a 20-point beating, 135-115, six players scored double figures with Kyle Kuzma and Davis contributing 18 points each. James led the way with 30 points and 10 assists with six rebounds.
In the second round against the Houston Rockets, Game 4 saw Davis drop 29 points with 12 rebounds and two blocks, James almost had a triple-double in that game with 16 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists. Once again six Lakers players scored double figures for the game to take a. 3-1, series lead, 110-100.
And in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals against the Denver Nuggets, The Brow and the King once again took the lead in the game. AD had 34 points, while the Kid from Akron almost dropped a triple-double with 26 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. Four other Lakers finished with over 10 points in the game to take the W, 114-108.
In all of the Game 4s they’ve played, the Lakers shot 50.9% at the field and 34.6% from the three-point area. The team also averaged 44.6 rebounds and only had 13 turnovers a game.
In the preview press conference for Game 4, James stated that their turnovers and defensive breakdowns caused them to crumble in Game 3 and assured that it won’t be happening again as they try to take a commanding 3-1 lead in the series.
“Turnovers really killed us; we understand that we can’t turn the ball over against this team. We also had some breakdowns defensively through the course of the game that we’re not accustomed to having, so those will be cleaned up in Game 4,” he said.
“We’re able to take a loss and understand why we lost and understand the things that we should’ve done better and the things that we can apply the next game to be better and we’re right back at that moment once again with the opportunity to be better that the game before, so we’re looking forward for the opportunity tomorrow night,” he added.
It’s an assurance that Lakers fans surely needed.