The Los Angeles Lakers have an open path to their 17th championship, or at least that’s how it’s felt since their dominant Game 1 win over the Miami Heat to start the NBA Finals on Wednesday. The Lakers thoroughly outplayed the Heat, and two of Miami’s most important players suffered injuries in Game 1.
However, the Lakers aren’t going to take their foot off of the gas until they’ve crossed the finish line. LeBron James made that clear after Game 1.
“We’ve got so much more work to do,” James said on Wednesday. “The job is not done. We’re not satisfied with winning one game. It’s that simple.”
James told reporters on Thursday he stayed up until around 4:30 a.m. watching film from Game 1. In that film, he probably saw how much the Lakers overwhelmed the Heat with their size and physicality, but he’s not banking on the same thing happening in Game 2 — he knows Erik Spoelstra’s going to try to put his team in a position to succeed, and James is going to try and do the same.
“Every game is going to be its own challenge, and we understand that,” James said. “You have to win games in different fashions. Sometimes even outside your own box. But I think the great teams learn that throughout the course of a run, throughout the course of a season, and that’s what puts them in a position to compete for a championship, which we are today.”
The Lakers are probably going to win again on Friday, and again on Sunday, but you won’t see the team celebrating until it’s officially over.
After all, what’s there to be happy about? The job’s not finished.
Notes and Updates
- Anthony Davis (right heel contusion), Danny Green (volar plate injury, left ring finger) and LeBron James (sore right groin) are probable for Game 1. Alex Caruso was taken off of the injury report.
- Bam Adebayo and Goran Dragic will both reportedly miss Game 2 after sustaining injuries in the first game. The Heat will have to replace two starters as a result.
Tip-off is at 6:00 p.m. PT on ABC. You can also sign up to watch the game on fuboTV here.