The Lakers and Heat are set to play Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Tuesday. Los Angeles is looking to come away with a win to go in front and take a 3-1 lead. After falling short in Game 3, this series could take a really interesting turn if they lose again.
All the credit in the world should go to Jimmy Butler, who put up a 40-point triple-double in the Game 3 win. He was doing it from minute one, all the way to minute 48.
He never stopped playing his best, and they needed everything he did to hold off a shifty Laker’s team. And now, they’re one win from equalizing the NBA Finals.
Given that Miami was down two starters, you’d have thought they’d have given up. The Lakers didn’t’ capitalize on this, and Anthony Davis went from having a dominant game to a nearly silent one. Davis is going to have to play much better in the next game, and the Lakers should also be considering another change in their ineffective starting lineup.
The Lakers are still favored by 7.5 points. The over/under is set at 218.5.
LA Aims for 3-1 Lead
LeBron James is known for leading his team to perhaps the greatest 3-1 comeback in NBA Playoff history. The hope will be to get the win on Tuesday to go ahead by that same series score. And should they come out with a win, there is no intention of letting it slip, and they’d put their foot on the gas.
James struggled mightily down the stretch last game, and it showed. If you take away the contributions of Kyle Kuzma and Markieff Morris, LA gets blown out. Each scored 19 off the bench, combining for nine three-pointers. They had things going when nobody else could seem to make a shot in the big moments.
Danny Green should not be starting for the Lakers given his poor play, though Frank Vogel has shown no inclination to take him out of the starting lineup/rotation. It should change for this one.
Can Miami Do It Again?
A win would have Miami tied with the Lakers at two games each. Whether or not Bam Adebayo makes his return in this one, it’s clear that this team can win. They got the victory with Meyers Leonard and Kelly Olynyk holding down all of the minutes at the center spot.
Olynyk was making timely plays, while Leonard was a fantastic supporter on the bench when he was off the floor. Butler muscled his way to 40 points, and on a day where he shot just 6-18 from the floor, Tyler Herro still made a huge impact in the last win.
The most surprising stat of all in Game 3, though, was Duncan Robinson’s +27 net rating in 39 minutes. He stepped up and played strong defense.
Heat Keep It Tight
Another win is possible for Miami. They’ll battle until the final whistle, hoping to even the series.
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