The Lakers cruised to a game one win and, without Bam Adebayo, Miami will struggle to even up the finals says Dave Gray...
"The Lakers match up so well with the lineup the Heat are going to be forced to put out. Los Angeles can dominate this game with their physicality."
Heat outmatched after injuries
Miami Heat @ Los Angeles Lakers
Saturday, 02:00 BST
Live on Sky Sports Arena
Lakers have too much of a physical advantage
The Lakers looked at their absolute best on Wednesday as the Finals got underway. They destroyed the Heat at both ends of the court.
The Lakers rebounded incredibly and, with the Heat missing Bam Adebayo, LA will have things even easier tonight. The Lakers just match up so well with the lineup the Heat are going to be forced to put out and they can just dominate this game with their physicality. LeBron James put up 25 points in game one and he should match that easily here as he barrels his way to the basket.
When the Lakers have lost in this series it has almost always been down to them playing too passively. With their huge physical advantages over the opposition it is hard to envisage a game plan that will see them go anything other than ultra aggressive.
Adebayo loss may be too big for Miami to overcome
Miamishave started every series of these playoffs fast and this is the first time they have found themselves behind. They will hope it was just a blip, and that the occasion got to some of their young stars, but the biggest issue was the loss of perhaps their most important player in Adebayo.
He is doubtful for this game and his absence would leave a huge hole in a team that were already mismatched in terms of size and power.Adebayo has been Miami's most important player in the bubble and without him it is hard to see how they can slow down the Lakers' powerful offence.
As well as Adebayo they have lost Goran Dragic and, while they still have some very good great players like Jimmy Butler, Tyler Herro and Kendrick Nunn, it means that the Heat's options on offence are limited. What has got them this far is that they have five or six players who can get hot and score on any given night. Without that they aren't half the threat they usually are.
Erik Spoelstra has put on a phenomenal coaching display throughout these playoffs and he will be doing all he can to give the Heat a chance. But they were already outmatched physically and even with Adebayo it was hard to see how they could stop the Lakers.Without him the Lakers' game plan is so easy to execute and there is little Miami have that can stop it.
The main worry is that the Lakers get up so big that they take their foot off the gas, but in the Finals that should not happen quite as much. Even with the big handicap, take the Lakers as they move one step closer to that NBA title.
Dave Gray's Regular Season NBA 2019/20 P/L