It seems a little strange to say, but the NBA season is over, and it's officially the offseason already. With the season officially over, that means the Lakers have officially been named NBA champs for the 17th time, tying the Boston Celtics for most franchise championships in NBA history. Of course, this means another win for LeBron, and a first win for Anthony Davis, who is only beginning his career in the NBA. As you know I'm not a critic, so I won't be talking about all the latest news and gossip, I'm just going to get right into the breakdown of the 2020 NBA Finals.
I'll start off with the Heat, as they were on the losing side of this Finals. I really think that there was know way possible the Heat could've beat this team. A team with LeBron is hard enough, but you add Anthony Davis and a bunch of solid role players? Now, the Heat have the more balanced team, their depth was one of the best in the league, but they simply weren't able to stop LeBron plus somehow lock down Davis at the same time, it's just not going to happen. I do, however, like the adjustments that were made by Erik Spoelstra for the Heat. I mentioned in my Finals preview article that we'd see more of Andre Iguodala and Derrick Jones Jr. I didn't think Solomon Hill was going to get much time, which he didn't, but I honestly would've liked to see him get a little bit more playing time. When he was in the game, he was the one helping on LeBron, or actually guarding LeBron. His height and weight with the ability to move laterally is quite impressive. For you football fans, it's like Derrick Henry's ability to move quickly to run through holes and into open field.
This is Miami's mistake. Kelly Olynyk. This man can do a little bit of everything, including shoot the ball despite being 6'11. The Lakers are a big team and they play in the paint. Miami is a small team and they play on the perimeter (although they score quite well in the paint as well). So yes, Spoelstra adjusted, but he didn't fully adjust and have faith in Olynyk and Meyers Leonard. These two players are very unique in their ability to defend shots in the paint but also shoot the three very efficiently. I think that if the Heat played these two big men more often with Adebayo on the floor as well, they could've forced the Lakers to shoot more outside shots because the middle would be clogged up. As for the Miami offense, it obviously took a hit with the loss of Goran Dragic for all but two games, he was able to return for game 6 but only played 19 minutes and shot very poorly. I don't think he should've played because his injury was obviously still bothering him, but I know how much he wanted to play. The Miami Heat offense needed to be centered around Jimmy Butler, everything needed to run through Jimmy Butler. Butler needed to be shooting most of the shots, because this is how Miami wins games.
As for the Lakers, it seemed as if they had figured out the Heat's defense already in game 1, and then in game 2, it was pretty much the same thing. The Lakers had been watching their film of the Celtics playing the Heat as they were well prepared for the Heatś patented zone defense. Like I said in my Finals preview article, the Lakers were going to be the hardest team to beat because of their lob threats and their ability to break the zone. The Heat defense did adjust, however, but not as much as they needed to because the Lakers were still able to score at will. Notice though, the amount of lob passes dropped significantly when Miami switched up their defense. The Lakers defense was mediocre, if I had to say. Shutting down Jimmy Butler was a major problem, as we saw, every night he was scoring 20+ points including a few over 30. In the attempts to lock down Butler, Robinson was able to escape for several threes, and contested or open, you bet he's going to hit the majority of them. They had an excellent gameplan on Herro however, as Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Danny Green's defense goes under the radar. That's who the Lakers had guarding Tyler Herro, and based off of Herro's shooting and scoring numbers, I think we can all agree they did a pretty good job. In every game of the Finals he played above 30 minutes, but he only got over 20 once, and it was only 21 points.
So as the Lakers bask in their glory of yet another championship, I'm sure Erik Spoelstra and the coaching staff are already studying how to better their offense and defense for next year, and hopefully, Jimmy Butler is resting for the next week or two, but knowing Jimmy, he probably won't.
That's all for now, thanks for reading!