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2019-20 NBA Championship: Los Angeles Lakers beat Miami Heat to clinch their 17th NBA title


Ninety-three days ago, 22 teams landed in Orlando, Fla. for the restart of the 2019-20 NBA season, which was halted for 4 months due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. After having 172 games played in the bubble, the curtain drew on this year-long season. Three-hundred fifty-six days after the season began, the Los Angeles Lakers won the 2019-20 NBA championship.

NBA Champions 2020
(Image source: NBA Twitter)

Game 6 of NBA FinalsLos Angeles lakers v/s Miami Heat (106-93)

Lakers win the series [4-2]

The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Miami Heat in 6 six games to win their 17th NBA Championship- tying the all-time championship record with the Boston Celtics in the NBA’s 74-year history. This is the Lakers’ first title since 2010 (defeating the Boston Celtics in 7 games), which was led by the great, Late Kobe Bryant. LeBron James won his 4th NBA Championship and 4th Finals MVP to become the first player in history to win Finals MVP with 3 different franchises- Miami Heat (2013,2014), Cleveland Cavaliers (2016), and now with the Lakers (2020).

Note: Danny Green also has 3 rings with three franchises- San Antonio (2014), Toronto Raptors (2019), and Lakers (2020).

“It doesn’t matter where it happens if you win a championship,” James said not long after leaving a court covered in confetti, a victory cigar in his right hand. “A bubble, Miami, Golden State — it doesn’t matter. When you get to this point, it’s one of the greatest feelings in the world for a basketball player to be able to win at the highest level.”

James was the recipient of the Bill Russell Finals MVP Award– having tallied a finals record 11 triple-doubles with 28 points, 14 rebounds, and ten assists, he was the best player for the Lakers throughout these finals. For the series, he averaged 29.8 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 8.5 assists while shooting 59 percent from the field. His co-star and running mate Anthony Davis recorded 25.0 points, 10.7 rebounds, and 3.2 assists in 6 games of these finals. His defensive prowess in game 6 was the x-factor in holding Miami to 58 points in 3 quarters and take a 28-point lead, the second-largest half-time lead in NBA Finals history.

LeBron James Finals MVP

“We just want our respect. Rob [Pelinka] wants his respect. Coach [Frank] Vogel wants his respect, our organization wants their respect, Laker Nation wants their respect … and I want my damn respect, too.”, LeBron said after accepting his Finals MVP award.

“I have always believed in LeBron James,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel says. “He’s the greatest player the basketball universe has ever seen, and if you think you know, you don’t know, OK, until you’re around him every day, you’re coaching him, you’re seeing his mind, you’re seeing his adjustments, seeing the way he leads the group. You think you know; you don’t know.”

For the Lakers, this championship meant so much to the organization, the players, and most of all- the fans. The team struggled during the late 2010s, during which they suffered the longest playoff drought in franchise history, failing to qualify for the postseason for six seasons. Before that stretch, they had missed the playoffs only five times in their entire existence up to 2013. “I think the chance to build a team around one of the greatest players and leaders to ever play doesn’t come along that often,” Pelinka said. “He showed trust in Jeanie and our front office to build a championship team, and once he put that trust in us, we had to deliver. There was no other option.”

One is as strong as it’s opposition forces it to be. The Miami Heat are an embodiment of discipline, hard work, and commitment. While many experts and analysts didn’t have the Heat winning the series, it never deterred their conviction to win. As fans of the sport, we owe the Miami Heat our gratitude for putting on a worthy performance fit for an NBA Finals matchup which saw the series go to 6 six games and kept us engaged throughout.

We proved people wrong throughout the season,” Adebayo said. “Nobody thought we’d get here. It’s been a great season. We’re brothers. We’re going to fight to the end. We came up short.”

“I wish I could’ve done it for the city, I wish I could’ve done it for my teammates,” says Jimmy Butler, who became the first player with multiple triple-doubles of 35 or more points in an NBA Finals. “We’re trending in the right direction. We’re going to learn from this. We’re going to get better. We’re going to come back. We’re going to come back. We’ll be back. That’s what we’re all saying in that locker room. We got guys that want to do it. We got guys that already want to get back in the gym and get to work at this thing. That’s what we do here.”

Lastly, huge props to Adam Silver (NBA Commissioner), the NBA organization and, the entire crew at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla. for risking their lives and leaving their families behind to help complete the 2019-20 NBA season. The best compliment for their efforts is the fact there were 0 COVID cases recorded in the 3.5-month duration at the bubble, which allowed for the smooth running of such a large scale event. Thank you, NBA.

Also Read: NBA Award winners 2019-20

Key Factors deciding Game 6:

  • The Lakers’ defense, fronted by Anthony Davis won them the game which led to them winning the championship. Davis cited the influence of Frank Vogel, the Lakers’ first-year coach. “He got on us Day 1 about defense,” Davis said.
  • Lakers bench players in Rajon Rondo (19 points, 4 rebounds, and four assists) and KCP (17 points) provided them the play-making and shot-creation opportunities they needed to seal the deal in 6 games.
  • Jimmy Butler had 12 points, 7 rebounds, and 8 assists to go along with Bam Adebayo‘s 25 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 assists as the Heat struggled to make plays on offense, prevent drive-ins to the basket and just turn the ball over on key possessions which saw LA run away with the game. Lakers are now 57-0 when leading after 3 quarters.
  • Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, and Jae Crowder, who usually found the space to get their shots off were suffocated on the perimeter by LAs’ defense which saw them score a cumulative 29 points on 9-27 shooting and aggregating a -25 +/- rating.
  • LeBron James– a man playing in his 10th finals in 11 years, capitalized on his wisdom and skill in closeout games against the inexperienced Heat, who couldn’t stop him from doing what he wanted when he wanted.

With that, we come to the end of the 2019-20 NBA season. Congratulations to the Los Angeles Lakers once again, and I’ll be back with more NBA content for the upcoming 2020-21 season.


This is what the Los Angeles Lakers players had to say later at the press conference:

LeBron James with a message to the Laker Nation post-win:

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  1. I think even someone who doesn’t watch NBA that often, someone like me, would be able to understand the game much better with such great insights! Good job Adi❤️

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