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A win away from NBA glory.
The Los Angeles Lakers moved on the cusp of a championship with a 102-96 win over the Miami Heat in Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Tuesday, October 6 (Wednesday, October 7, Manila time).
LeBron James dominated in the second half and chalked up 28 points, 12 rebounds, and 8 assists as the Lakers seized a commanding 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven affair.
Scoring only 8 points and committing 5 turnovers in the first half, James took control in the last two quarters to help the Lakers inch closer to their first NBA title in a decade.
“We understand what is at stake. The job is not done,” James said.
The Heat threatened to stain the Lakers’ 55-0 record when leading after 3 quarters by knotting the score at 83, but James restored order for the Lakers with 5 straight points.
Since then, the Heat never tied the game again as Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Rajon Rondo, and Anthony Davis brought the Lakers home.
Caldwell-Pope hit a triple and a layup in back-to-back possessions before Rondo converted an easy deuce and assisted on a Davis three-pointer for a 100-91 lead with 30 ticks left.
Davis put up 22 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists, and 4 blocks, the last a denial on Jimmy Butler that virtually sealed the game.
Despite finishing just a dime short of another triple double with 22 points, 10 rebounds, and 9 assists, Butler struggled to dominate just like he did in their Game 3 win as the Lakers put Davis on him on defense.
Caldwell-Pope had 15 points, Danny Green chipped in 10 points, while Markieff Morris and Kyle Kuzma added 9 points each for the Lakers.
The game marked the return of Bam Adebayo, who delivered 15 points and 7 rebounds in the loss, from his neck injury but the Heat still missed the services of Goran Dragic (foot).
Tyler Herro backstopped Butler with 21 points and 7 rebounds, while Duncan Robinson chimed in 17 points for the Heat.
Only the 2015 Cleveland Cavaliers, led by James, managed to come back from a 1-3 deficit in NBA Finals history. – Rappler.com