Heat vs. Lakers Game 5 – LeBron James on Verge of 4th Title and 4th Finals MVP

LeBron James looks to win his fourth NBA title on Friday and conclude a most unusual NBA season when the Los Angeles Lakers eye their 17th all-time championship as they face the Miami Heat in Game 5 of the NBA Finals from the Orlando bubble. The Lakers are up 3-1 and favored on the NBA odds to finish things off.

How to Bet Heat vs. Lakers NBA Odds & TV Info

  • When: Friday, 9 PM ET
  • Where: ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
  • TV: ABC
  • Stream: ESPN app
  • Radio: ESPN radio
  • NBA Odds: Lakers -7 (216)

Why Bet on Miami? | 2020 NBA Expert Analysis

The Heat were feeling confident entering Tuesday’s Game 4 because Jimmy Butler had raised his game and carried his team to a 115-104 win in Game 3 on Sunday. Plus, the Heat welcomed back big man and first-time All-Star Bam Adebayo from a two-game injury absence on Tuesday. However, the Lakers prevailed 102-96.

If you were a bettor who back Miami and -7.5, you got very, very lucky with that cover as Tyler Herro made a meaningless 3-pointer at the buzzer. The rookie hit 8-of-18 shots and three 3-pointers for 21 points, seven rebounds, three assists and a steal in the loss. Herro continues to make noise, especially with Goran Dragic (foot) iffy for the rest of the series. Dragic has been out since Game 1 and isn’t all that likely for Friday.

Herro is the 6th rookie in NBA history to score 300 or more points in a single postseason. He has scored in double-figures in each of Miami’s 19 playoff games.  That streak ties the longest by any rookie in NBA postseason history. Alvan Adams also scored in double-digits in 19 consecutive games during the 1976 playoffs.

Butler had another great game Tuesday with 22 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists, three steals and a block. He is averaging 27.5 points and 10.0 assists in the series. Adebayo also had nice numbers in finishing with 15 points, seven rebounds, one assist and one steal in 33 minutes. The Heat scored 104.3 points per 100 possessions. Heading into the game, they were averaging 113.5 per 100 in the playoffs.

That there are two days off ahead of Game 5 could help the Heat, especially Adebayo, who said after Game 4 that he’s “still not 100 percent.” Maybe that improves Dragic’s chances of returning. He warmed up before Game 4, but the medical staff ultimately decided he wasn’t ready to play.

“I feel like, collectively, we all need two days off,” Adebayo said after Tuesday’s loss. “It’s not just me, it’s not just Goran, but we all need a couple days just to readjust, realign, get some fresh air and get back to the drawing board.”

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra has posted an overall 10-6 (.625) record when facing elimination, that ties for the fifth-highest winning percentage in NBA postseason history (minimum 15 games).

Why Bet on LA Lakers? | 2020 NBA Expert Analysis

LeBron and teammate Danny Green look to become the third and fourth players in NBA history to win a title with three different teams. James won two with the Heat and one with Cleveland. Green won his first NBA title with the Spurs in 2014, defeating LeBron and the Heat, and won a second just last season as a member of the Toronto Raptors. John Salley and Robert Horry are the other players to accomplish it.

In Tuesday’s 102-96 win, LeBron hit 8-of-16 shots, 2-of-5 3-pointers and 10-of-12 free throws for 28 points, 12 rebounds, eight assists and a steal. LeBron overcame a slow first-half start and committed six turnovers, but only had one turnover in the second half, when the Lakers took control late and put it away. LeBron hit a tough fadeaway shot to give the Lakers an 81-75 lead with 8:46 remaining in the game, and the Heat were never able to gain control of the game after that one.

James and Miami’s Jimmy Butler led their teams outright in points, rebounds and assists in Game 4.  It marked the 2nd time in NBA Finals history that opposing players led their teams outright in points, rebounds and assists. It also happened by James and Butler in Game 3.

James now has 24 career 25-point, 10-rebound games in the Finals.  That passes Elgin Baylor for most in NBA Finals history. James has 500 points this postseason. It’s the 6th time he’s had 500 points, 150 rebounds & 150 assists in a single postseason. The only other player in NBA history to accomplish this feat was Larry Bird in 1987. LeBron is going to win his fourth NBA Finals MVP, which would put him solo second all-time behind Michael Jordan’s six.

Anthony Davis had a terrible Game 4 but bounced back by hit 8-of-16 shots, two 3-pointers and 4-of-4 free throws for 22 points, nine rebounds, four assists, a steal and four blocks in Tuesday’s win. Throughout the game, he frightened Heat drivers who occasionally passed up point-blank opportunities at the rim because Davis was in the vicinity. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope hit 6-of-12 shots and 3-of-8 3-pointers for 15 points, three rebounds and five assists.

Expert Prediction

Lakers 110, Heat 108  

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