The last time that the LA Lakers were in the NBA finals was in 2010 with the guidance of the late Kobe Bryant and today, LeBron James has managed to guide the purple and gold city back to the place they have so desired to be in over a decade.
LeBron James led the Lakers with a triple-double scoring 38 points. 10 assists and 16 rebounds against a very resilient Nuggets side.
The Lakers beat the Denver Nuggets dubbed as the “comeback kids” in the NBA bubble after they knocked out the LA Clippers after coming back from 3-1 to win 4-3 of the series.
The Lakers managed scoring 117 against Denver Nuggets’ 107 to win the game by 10 points and close out the series with 10 points. Anthony Davis who has been so important to the side this whole campaign managed to score 27 points and collected 5 rebounds and 3 assists.
Despite being under foul trouble, Nikola Jokic managed to get 20 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists while the injured star Jamal Murray could only manage 19 points, 4 rebounds and 8 assists in a night that he will want to quickly forget.
Jamal Murray has played the most minutes in the NBA playoffs this season, more than any other player and this all down to the fact that he has been the go-to guy for the Nuggets.
In the night where the two superstars of Jokic and Murray were not having their nights, Jerami Grant stepped up to the occasion to give the Nuggets a fighting chance against an all-star dominated Lakers team.
What Next for the LA Lakers?
In a trophy presentation ceremony, coach Frank Vogel spoke about how this is not the last of the business. “We still have business to do, this not the end of it”
Anthony Davis who made his first-ever appearance in the NBA said that “It feels good making the NBA finals” He continued to say “This is what they brought me here for, to make the big-time plays. Obviously, we were in the Mamba jerseys. You never want to lose in these Jerseys.”
The general Manager Rob Pelinca said that it felt good being back at the NBA finals, but they still have 4 more wins to go to finish off the business.
LeBron James making his 10th NBA finals, only 1 short of Karim Abdul, said that they still have a job to finish and when asked how he channelled his experience to take over in the 4th quarter, he said:
“I channelled it through my teammates. My teammates said, bring us home, and it’s my responsibility to try and make the right plays and do the right things on the floor to win us ball games. We have a few guys that have never been to the finals so I took that responsibility as well. My shoulders are wide enough to carry a lot of loads but my mind is stronger. I always keep my mind strong. Just happy to be in this position.”
On how much this is joy and how much business is still to be done; he said “We are going to enjoy tonight as we should because this is not promised every year. There are only two teams that can advance to the finals every year.
So we are going to enjoy tonight but we understand that we got bigger fish to fry. We understand that there is a bigger goal but we can’t take this for granted because this doesn’t happen every year to everybody.”
Other players that have been fantastic for the Lakers in the playoffs have been Dwight Howard whose defensive abilities were important in shutting down Jokic in close to 3 games of the series. Rajon Rondo was phenomenal ever since he returned from the injury that had kept him out till the playoffs.
Magic Johnson in a tweet said that when LeBron signed with the Lakers, he promised to take them to the NBA finals and he has delivered on that promise.
The Western Conference champions will now wait for the winner between Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics where the tie is currently 3-2 to the Miami Heat.
Author: Moses Echodu
Moses is an avid Sports and Tech enthusiast. He loves to keep up to date with all the latest information and research on some of the most compelling stories.