No, it will not be the Bucks, the top-seeded team overall in the NBA after racking up 56 wins and a .767 winning percentage this season. Nor will it be the second-seeded Raptors, the defending champs from last season. It won’t be the conference-finalist Celtics, seeded No. 3 in the East.
No, and it is not even the fourth-seeded Pacers, who were swept in the first round of the playoffs by the team that will face the Lakers after coming away with a Game 6 win over Boston: the No. 5 seeded Miami Heat. Just as the Lakers are returning to the NBA Finals as a much different team, so the Heat will be back, for the first time since 2014.
Back then, of course, the Heat were led by LeBron James, now the anchor of the Lakers. It would be fascinating if James and the Lakers were facing Miami under normal circumstances, which would call for L.A. to play, at least, Games 3 and 4 in South Florida. Alas, all games will be restricted to AdventHealth Arena on the Disney World campus in Orlando.
NBA Finals Schedule: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Miami Heat
Here is how the NBA’s FInals schedule shapes up. The teams will be off until Wednesday, with Game 1 beginning at 9 p.m. ET. All games will begin at 9, except the two Sunday games–Games 3 and 6. The teams will play every other day until Game 4, when there will be a two-day break before Game 5.
|DAY||DATE||TIME (ET)||GM||AWAY||HOME||VENUE||TV / R|
|Wed||9/30||9:00 PM||1||Miami||L.A. Lakers||AHA||ABC/R|
|Fri||10/2||9:00 PM||2||Miami||L.A. Lakers||AHA||ABC/R|
|Sun||10/4||7:30 PM||3||L.A. Lakers||Miami||AHA||ABC/R|
|Tue||10/6||9:00 PM||4||L.A. Lakers||Miami||AHA||ABC/R|
|Fri||10/9||9:00 PM||5*||Miami||L.A. Lakers||AHA||ABC/R|
|Sun||10/11||7:30 PM||6*||L.A. Lakers||Miami||AHA||ABC/R|
|Tue||10/13||9:00 PM||7*||Miami||L.A. Lakers||AHA||ABC/R|
Miami Heat vs. Los Angeles Lakers Betting Odds
The Lakers will head into the Finals as the overwhelming favorite, with bettors needing to lay down $358 to win $100, as Action Network reports. Citing BetMGM, here’s where Action Network set the odds based on how long the series will go. The Lakers won all three of their postseason series so far in five games.
The Heat are the biggest longshot to reach the Finals since the Nets in 2002.
|Los Angeles Lakers||Miami Heat|
|Win in 4||+450||+5000|
|Win in 5||+275||+2000|
|Win in 6||+300||+1200|
|Win in 7||+500||+800|
How to Watch & Stream NBA Finals Games
All NBA Finals games will air nationally on ABC. They can be streamed through a number of platforms, including Hulu, YouTube, Fubo and AT&T Now, according to PCMag.com.
There are also options on NBA League Pass, which offers options for watching games on delay as well as radio-only options.
NBA playoffs 2020: Round-By-Round Results
Eastern Conference Finals Results
(3) Celtics vs. (5) Heat: Miami wins series 4-2
Western Conference Finals Results
(1) Lakers vs. (3) Nuggets: Los Angeles wins series 4-1
Eastern Conference Semifinals Results
(1) Bucks vs. (5) Heat: Miami wins series 4-1
(2) Raptors vs. (3) Celtics: Boston wins series 4-3
Western Conference Semifinals Results
(1) Lakers vs. (4) Rockets: Los Angeles wins series 4-1
(2) Clippers vs. (3) Nuggets: Denver wins series 4-3
Eastern Conference First-Round Results
(1) Bucks vs. (8) Magic: Milwaukee wins series 4-1
(2) Raptors vs. (7) Nets: Toronto wins series 4-0
(3) Celtics vs. (6) 76ers: Boston wins series 4-0
(4) Pacers vs. (5) Heat: Miami wins series 4-0
Western Conference First-Round results
(1) Lakers vs. (8) Trail Blazers: Los Angeles wins series 4-1
(2) Clippers vs. (7) Mavericks: Los Angeles wins series 4-2
(3) Nuggets vs. (6) Jazz: Denver wins series 4-3
(4) Rockets vs. (5) Thunder: Houston wins series 4-3