The Los Angeles Lakers missed a chance to take the title last night as the Lakers lose to the Miami Heat 111-108. The Lakers had a chance to close the Finals out with a win and get James his fourth title and AD his first. Miami was trying to stay alive after falling down 3-1 on Wednesday. Every time the Lakers tried to make a run the Heat came back as once again Butler was not going home.
Once again the Lakers came out slow and the Heat came out shooting. This has been the trend in the games the Heat won and in all the Games the Lakers lost in the playoffs. It did not take long before the Lakers got it together but by this time the Heat was rolling. They end the first at 25-24 Heat. This was now one of the themes of the game. The Heat rolling and the Lakers trying to catch up.
As this went on it became a game of LeBron vs Jimmy. Don’t get me wrong there were a lot of guys that played a hell of a game. Duncan Robinson who gave 26 points and five rebounds was a great second option from Butler. He hit keys buckets that kept the lead with the Heat. And of course on the Lakers AD, who I believe should be the series and league MVP, had another great game. With 28 and 12, Davis did what he could with the health he has. I say this as it was painfully obvious he was in pain for the majority of the second half anyway.
The Second half
Another big bench guy that stepped up for the Lakers was Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. FCP had 16 points but it seemed his buckets all came when they needed it. Big three after big three. As they battled through the second half and more so in the fourth quarter, it was the Lakers trying to catch the Heat. They would get within a few points and the Heat would hit a big shot. It then became James getting to the rim and Butler making the shot. Even LeBron hit big three after big three.
In the last minute of the game, the game went back and forth with the Lakers taking a lead on a shot by James and Butler getting to the line for the Heat and hitting his free-throws. With only 16.8 seconds left and the Heat up one, the Lakers had a chance for the win. Would LeBron get his fourth title on this shot? As he drives the lane he had three guys converge around him. He throws the ball out to the top of the key to a wide-open Danny Green for a three and the win, which hits the front of the rim. Markieff Morris grabs the rebound and just stops for a brief second, then throws the ball over LeBron’s head out of bounds who was placed near the basket, game over, Heat win.
How many times has James entrusted a last-second shot to win a title to another? Will, he ever do it again? I have a saying for role guys at the end of games, “that is why they are role guys”. To me that is the difference between a star and a role guy, a star hits that shot at that moment, see AD this playoff alone. Yes, I know there have been role guy to hit that shot, Craig Hodges, ect.. and stars that have missed that shot. But my money will always go on the star in that situation. I can bet James will not do that again if it is the same situation in game six.
Lakers Heat Game 6
This is not where the Lakers wanted to be but exactly where the Heat hoped they would be after game four. All the Heat need is one game to force game seven. The biggest question I have, is AD okay? The way he limped all through the fourth quarter and the look on his face was not a great sign. I thought it was the reason LeBron looked to take over near the end, I believe he knows that may have been the shot to win.
The Heat have made this a series and they did it with basically seven guys. Butler has been as good as a guy can be and all the other Heat players have done their part. Game six should be the best game of the playoffs as what is at stake for both teams. The Lakers want no part of a game seven after being up 3-1 and the Heat would love nothing more than a game seven. Has all the makings of a great game. I think no way James lets this one slip by and the Lakers take game 6. But not without a fight by the Heat.