It was very clear from the onset of Game 5 of the NBA Finals that LeBron James wanted to close out the Miami Heat. He put together arguably his best effort of the playoffs with 40 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists on the night. LeBron and Jimmy Butler went toe-to-toe to end the game but the Lakers failed to help their leader finish off the iconic performance with a win.
LeBron has lost a lot of close games over the years and former Laker Nick Young thinks that the star should see a therapist.
Between JR Smith’s debacle in the 2018 Finals and now he has Danny Green miss a wide-open 3-pointer to win the whole thing. It’s definitely got to be frustrating for the superstar, especially after such a strong performance. It’s far from panic time for the Lakers as they still have two more chances to finish the Heat off.
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LeBron Walks Through Final Play
With Anthony Davis obviously hurt, everybody on the court knew that LeBron was going to try and take the final shot of the game. He had a chance to detail what happened at the end of the game.
“We just needed to get one stop. We felt like if we could get one stop, we could do something on the offensive end,” LeBron said after the loss. “But we got a hell of a look. We got a hell of a look to win the game, to win the series. Didn’t go down. And then we got the offensive rebound, we turned the ball over. I thought we had a lot more time than I think we even thought after the offensive rebound, and a pass wasn’t executed as we would like.
“But we’ve got to be better. We’ve just got to be better in Game 6 and close the series.”
The Heat have made it clear that they aren’t giving up and now the momentum has swung in their favor. If the Lakers lose Game 6, they could be in serious trouble of making the history books in the worst way possible.
Lakers Can’t Make Mistakes Against the Heat
Miami is banged up and has been without one of their star players for most of the series. However, they are as scrappy as they come and Erik Spoelstra clearly runs a tight ship. LeBron knows that the litany of mistakes the Lakers are making is keeping the Heat in the series.
“One thing about this team that we are playing, they make you pay for every mistake,” LeBron said of the Heat. “It’s the same as when I was playing against Golden State all those years, you make a mistake, they make you pay. So we have to understand that.”
The Lakers have a veteran team with a number of former champions on the roster. They should be ready for this moment but LeBron had to carry the team in Game 5. The role players need to step up because LeBron shouldn’t be expected to put up 40 points every game.