NBA Finals Game 1: Lakers beat the Heat, 116-98

The Best of the West showed the Beast of the East no mercy as the LA Lakers overpowered the Miami Heat, 116-98 in the NBA Finals Game 1 on Thursday, October 1, 2020 (Manila time).

NBA Finals Game 1: Lakers beat the Heat, 116-98
LeBron James and the Lakers drew the first blood vs. Miami Heat. Photo Credit: NY Times

Almost a year ago when the NBA 2019 - 2020 season started, experts and fans predicted that the Los Angeles Clippers and Milwaukee Bucks will face in the Finals.

Nobody believed that the Los Angeles Lakers and the Miami Heat would reach the pinnacle of the world’s most prestigious basketball tournament. Really. Nobody.

Hoop junkies got saddened by the almost cancellation of this year’s season as COVID-19 also hit the league. After all the hurdles and obstacles, LeBron James and the Lakers face Jimmy Butler and the Heat at the “Bubble” for the Larry O’Brien trophy.

Butler spearheaded his squad early in the opener with an impressive 4/4 shooting and grabbed a double-figure advantage. James and his gang however, struggled offensively.

As LeBron James continued to be cold on court, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Anthony Davis took the scoring helm for the Lakers and closed the quarter with a 31-28 lead.

Rookie sensation Tyler Herro who was scoreless in the 1st period started to heat up and brought the lead back to Miami at the beginning of the 2nd quarter.

Despite Miami’s lockdown defense on James, the Lakers' supporting cast showed up and concluded the 1st half with a 11/17 3-point field goal shooting and a very comfortable 65-48 advantage.

The Lakers carried on with their scoring momentum at the third. The purple and gold boys were still hot from the rainbow territory while the south beach squad were draining blanks and lost Goran Dragic due to a left foot injury.

LeBron James finally broke free from Miami’s glue-tight defense and took charge in the penultimate quarter. Los Angeles’ lead ballooned to 26, 93-67 heading to the final canto.

Another Heat player down. Coach Erik Spoelstra lost another notable baller in Bam Adebayo after the starter-center re-injured his left shoulder at the dying minutes of the third.

Despite losing 2 key players, Miami managed to bring the lead down to just 20 with 10 more minutes left.

Heat’s Tyler Herro and Kendrick Nunn had quite an impact in the game as the duo made the Lakers nervous by trimming the lead to a dozen.

LeBron James put the finishing touches as the Lakers closed Game 1, 116-98.

Game 2 will be on October 3, Saturday, 9am (PH Time).

— Joey Boy Capos, The Summit Express

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