Sports

LeBron solidies his legacy with NBA Finals win

by joseph cotton, campus news editor
Photo courtesy of Kirby Lee, USA Today Sports
Lebron James won his fourth NBA Finals on Sunday, as the Lakers knocked off the Miami Heat in five games. James, who has previously won championships with the Cavaliers and Heat, also won Finals MVP.

With a 106-93 Game 6 win over the Miami Heat, the Los Angeles Lakers were named NBA champions on Sunday. 

LeBron James, who unanimously won the Finals MVP trophy, posted a 28 point triple-double during Sunday’s game. 

Other notable contributions for the Lakers came from Rajon Rondo with 19 points off the bench and Anthony Davis who posted a double-double with 15 rebounds and 19 points. 

Other than Bam Adebayo, who put up 25 points and 10 rebounds despite recently coming off an injury, the Heat saw most of their best players underperform expectations. 

Tyler Herro put up only seven points while shooting 3-10 from the field. Similarly, Goran Dragic scored 5 points while missing all four of his three- point attempts. 

Butler fared slightly better than the other two with 12 points, but was unable to muster the heroics he did in earlier series wins. 

For the Lakers organization, this NBA title marks their 17th championship, tying the Boston Celtics for the most titles in NBA history. 

The championship also puts them back into the upper tier of NBA teams after missing the playoffs in the previous season and struggling through late 2010s after the prime of the late Kobe Byrant. 

For the Heat, the loss now spells the end of their Cinderella story playoff run. 

The team started the playoffs as the fifth seed but strung together a series of commanding playoff upsets, most notably a 4-1 series win over the favorite Milwaukee Bucks.  

As for James’ personal resume, Sunday’s win represents his fourth championship and his fourth finals MVP awards. 

The Akron-born superstar has now won championships with three separate teams, becoming the first player in NBA history to do so. His other two championships came from his runs with the Heat and the Cleveland Cavaliers. 

For those keeping track, Michael Jordan won six championships and six finals MVPs-all of them with the Chicago Bulls. 

The free-agency implications of the playoffs are notable as well. Davis, who has a player option on his contract, will most likely stay with the Lakers given the championship ring. 

Plus, playing with the James, the best active player,  as he looks to take less of an offensive load late into his career is a nice position to be in while starting the prime of your career. 

Concerning Miami’s free agency moves, the Heat has a lot of options heading into next season. 

The organization has enough salary-cap space to sign a max contract and enough left over to sign a solid rotation player. 

Even if the Heat can’t sign a player who would command the max contract to their roster, the organization can look to bring in two all-star caliber players which would give the team more than enough firepower to be a strong contender in the eastern conference as their young players start to develop.  

I suspect that they add smaller pieces while keeping the max-contract slot open for the next year. 

A solid point guard like Mike Conley of the Utah Jazz or a versatile big to split minutes with Adebayo such as Montrez Harrell would help fill out the Miami rotation nicely. 

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