Unexpected NBA Finals matchup

Unexpected NBA Finals matchup
October 07
14:07 2020

Many people expected the L.A. Lakers to make it to the NBA Finals out of the west, but on the other hand, no one really expected the Miami Heat to make it out of the east. Without any “superstar” players, the Heat go into the finals as a decisive underdog against the Lakers.

For me, it was very exciting to see the Miami Heat make it to the finals without having a super team. This is not quite a David and Goliath story, but conventional wisdom would lead you to think that the Lakers will win easily, especially having two of the league’s best players on their roster.

The fact that Miami made it to the finals is a slap in the face to many people who said a team needs two superstars to win. Even if the Heat don’t walk away with the championship, they have proven a team that is built solid from top to bottom can compete with the best of the best.

Even though I don’t have a horse in this race, so to speak, I anticipate the Lakers winning in seven games. I envision this series being a drag out, knock’em down series, with both teams having advantages in certain areas.

When it comes to star power, the Lakers have that in LeBron James and Anthony Davis. With those two players alone, their roster stacks up well against anyone. Their supporting cast, however, will determine the series in my opinion. Rajon Rondo, Kyle Kuzma, Danny Green and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope all need to play to their levels of capability in order to take the load off of James and Davis.

The Lakers knocked off the Blazers, Rockets and the Nuggets to get to the Finals. We were all hoping for an all-L.A. matchup in the conference finals, but the Clippers did not live up to their end of the bargain. The championship experience of James and others is going to bode well for the Lakers during crunch time.

As for the Heat, they lack the star power at the top, but what they do have is a host of role players that execute very well in what they do. Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo grab many of the headlines, which are well deserved, but the Heat goes as their role players go.  

As a five-seed, the Heat have beaten the Pacers, Bucks and Celtics on their way to the finals. To be honest, I picked the Bucks and Celtics to beat the Heat. They have exceeded my expectations of how far they could go and now I am a believer.

Players like rookie Tyler Herro, Jae Crowder, Goran Dragic and Duncan Robinson have all stepped up their games in the playoffs to get the Heat into the Finals. I am consistently impressed by the poise and clutch play exhibited by the Heat role players game in and game out. There is no question Miami has the stronger supporting cast, but will that be enough to win? I doubt it.

For Miami to have a chance, they must find a way to slow down Davis. I think James will get his, regardless of what Miami does, so the goal should be to shut down Davis and the supporting cast. If they are kept in check, Miami’s chance of winning goes up.

I just think when it’s all said and done, the combination of James and Davis will make the difference in the end. I will say I am glad the Heat showed there is a different way to achieve success besides trying to build a super team.

If James is able to pull off this series, he will inch one championship closer to the G.O.A.T., which we all know is Michael Jordan. Of course, we know Jordan has six championships and this will only make four for James, but that will bring him one closer to that magic number.

That would be an incredible feat, especially when you consider James is in his 17th year in the league and is 35 years of age. With everything James stands for on and off the court, I don’t think there is a better person to root for if you don’t have an allegiance to a team.

I am just going to sit back and enjoy this series. Watching two teams that got to the promise land in two different ways, battle it out to see who is better, this is definitely must-see TV.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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