Date & Time: Friday, October 2nd, 9 PM ET (Saturday, 6:30 AM IST)
Venue: AdventHealth Arena, Orlando, FL
The Miami Heat started things on a positive note in Game 1 of the NBA Finals and gained an early lead against the LA Lakers. The Purple and Gold went into overdrive post that, recording a 75-30 run to absolutely decimate Jimmy Butler and co.
Miami Heat Preview
The Miami Heat are in a difficult spot right now. Goran Dragic has a plantar issue in his left foot which could rule him out of the NBA Finals while Bam Adebayo has reaggravated his left shoulder. We'll have to see how these injuries pan out but they did play a role in the blowout loss against LA Lakers in Game 1.
The biggest positive for Miami Heat was the performance of Kendrick Nunn who managed 18 points on 8-of-11 shooting in the NBA Finals opener. Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson received reality checks as the former went -35 and the latter couldn't get on the board. Overall, Erik Spoelstra has a tough job ahead of him.
Key Player - Jimmy Butler
Given the injury trouble that the Miami Heat find themselves in, Jimmy Butler will have to take things up a notch in the NBA Finals. The positive signs are already there since he was more aggressive on offense in Game 1 and managed 23 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the field. Butler has a sore ankle so he too needs to recuperate a bit.
Miami Heat Predicted Lineup
Kendrick Nunn, Duncan Robinson, Jimmy Butler, Jae Crowder, Bam Adebayo
LA Lakers Preview
No team has been better at making adjustments than the LA Lakers this postseason. They've started out slowly in so many games – including the NBA Finals opener – and then undergone the necessary tweaks to come out on top. Once they catch hold of the game, they're ruthless enough to not allow the opposition back in.
Anthony Davis and LeBron James continue to be the best one-two punch in the league but were ably supported by their teammates in Game 1, especially from downtown with LA Lakers shooting the three at 39.5%. The Purple and Gold used their size advantage to overpower the Miami Heat and would want to replicate that during the rest of the NBA Finals.
Key Player - Anthony Davis
Anthony Davis is the most lethal offensive player and rim protector for the LA Lakers. Given that Bam Adebayo will likely not be at his best in the next game, AD can own the paint and tire out the Miami Heat. He made the most of Adebayo's absence on Wednesday to notch up 34 points in the series opener and would love to build on that.
LA Lakers Predicted Lineup
LeBron James, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Danny Green, Anthony Davis, Dwight Howard
Heat vs Lakers Prediction
It's all LA Lakers at this point on paper. Even if the Miami Heat have all of their stars back, the Purple and Gold simply have more firepower and will be the likely candidates to take a 2-0 lead in the NBA Finals on Friday night.
Where to watch Heat vs Lakers?
The 2020 NBA Finals is being broadcasted exclusively on ABC in the United States. Fans in India can tune in to Sony Six. You can also live stream the same via NBA League Pass.
Published 01 Oct 2020, 12:34 IST