The Lakers’ 28-point advantage is the second-widest half-time lead in NBA finals history. The largest was Game 1 of the 1985 NBA finals, the so-called Memorial Day Massacre, where the Boston Celtics led 79-49 over the Lakers at the break en route to a 148-114 win.
Half-time: Los Angeles 58-34 Miami
Nunn puts down a lay-up on Miami’s final possession of the first half but the Heat trail by 28 points after the Lakers’ second-quarter avalanche. LeBron is leading the way for Los Angeles with 11 points, nine rebounds and six assists.
Los Angeles 58-34 Miami; 49.6, second quarter
Caldwell-Pope hits back-to-back threes coming out of the timeout and the Lakers have pushed the lead to 30. Miami barely showing a pulse.
Los Angeles 58-34 Miami; 2.57, second quarter
The game has completely gotten away from Miami after a Davis dunk, a Caldwell-Pope two and a Caruso fast-break lay-up off a James assist in quick succession. The Lakers are pouring it on and Miami simply have no answer.
Los Angeles 51-34 Miami; 2.57, second quarter
Butler misses one of two foul shots. Then Adebayo misses two of two freebies on the next possession. The Heat have missed seven free throws tonight after shooting so well throughout the series. Just devastating.
Los Angeles 51-32 Miami; 4.01, second quarter
The Lakers are playing championship defense, completely shutting down Miami on the offensive end. Caldwell-Pope converts an old-fashioned three-point play on the other end. A lazy turnover by Nunn then results in Davis getting fouled while shooting on the other end. Davis drains both attempts and he’s now 27-for-27 from the line in the finals (and has made his last 38 in the playoffs). The Heat need something here, desperately, to keep this one from running away from them.
Los Angeles 42-27 Miami; 6.16, second quarter
Butler drains a 12ft floater but Caruso answers with a tip bucket on the other end and Rondo hits another after a few empty possessions to push the Laker lead to 15.
Los Angeles 35-23 Miami; 10.00, second quarter
Butler makes one of two free throws and Miami have already missed four shots from the line tonight after shooting 88% for the series, including 21-for-22 in Game 5 (and 8-for-8 in the fourth quarter). Rondo answers with a three-pointer on the other end and the veteran point guard has nine points in six minutes off the bench. Both sides make swiches as Herro returns for Nunn and Caruso (curiously) comes in for the red-hot Rondo. The Lakers are ahead by double digits for the first time tonight, then a LeBron bucket pushes the lead to 12 and the Heat call a timeout.
End of first quarter: Los Angeles 28-20 Miami
Miami guard Goran Dragić, the Heat’s second-leading scorer in the playoffs, has checked in after missing the past four games since suffering a foot injury in Game 1. Adebayo hits one of two free throws after getting fouled on a shot attempt, but LeBron answers with an old-fashioned with an old-fashioned three-point play to finsih the opening period with an eight-point lead.
The Lakers are 10-0 on transition points so far and LeBron has nine points, five rebounds and three assists already.
Los Angeles 25-19 Miami; 1.22, first quarter
Anthony Davis, who’s averaged 30.3 points in games following a Lakers loss throughout the playoffs, throws down a dunk out of the timeout. Then Rondo makes a lay-up and Davis flushes another dunk off a LeBron assist. The 6-0 run makes it 23-16, Los Angeles. Butler then opens his account with a three pointer, but Davis answers with a stepback jumper from 18ft on the ensuing possession for a six-point lead.
Los Angeles 17-16 Miami; 3.22, first quarter
Miami’s Jae Crowder is fouled while attempting a three out of the timeout and calmly drains all three shots to draw the Heat closer. Herro deposits a driving lay-up in their next possession and the Heat are level at 13-all. The Lakers nose in front with baskets by Rajon Rondo (off a nifty LeBron assist) and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, but Kendrick Nunn makes his presence felt after checking in for Herro with a 26ft three to close the Lakers’ lead to 17-6. Notably, the Lakers have been throwing double-teams at Butler all night and he’s attempted only one shot.
Los Angeles 13-8 Miami; 6.18, first quarter
The Lakers’ Anthony Davis opens with a 19ft jumper and Miami’s Bam Adebayo answers with an alley-oop dunk off a Tyler Herro assist gets on the next possession. LeBron follows with a dunk and driving lay-up after a few empty possessions to give the Lakers a 6-2 lead. Miami’s Duncan Robinson makes a pair of threes – a promising sign given how crucial his playoff career-high 26 points were in Game 5 – but Danny Green answers with three from tthe cormner and a LeBron James two on the following possession pushes the Los Angeles lead to 13-8 and prompts Miami coach Erik Spoelstra to call a timeout.
Alex Caruso is in the starting lineup in place of Dwight Howard. It’s the first start of the postseason for third-year point guard. The players are on the court for the opening tip and we should be under way momentarily.
Good evening and welcome to tonight’s Game 6 of the NBA finals between the Miami Heat and the Los Angeles Lakers. We’re back in the NBA’s Walt Disney World bubble after Friday night’s tooth-and-nail battle which saw the fifth-seeded Eastern Conference champions survive to live another day against the heavily favored LeBron James-Anthony Davis package. The Lakers came within seconds of winning their record-setting 17th NBA title, but Danny Green’s potential title-clinching three missed the mark and we’re back for another game with the Lakers holding a three-games-to-two lead in the best-of-seven championship series.
Tip-off is roughly 15 minutes away.
Bryan will be here shortly. In the meantime here’s why you probably had a better weekend than Lakers veteran Danny Green.