NBA

Heat to face LeBron's Lakers in NBA Finals after eliminating Celtics

By Sports Desk September 27, 2020

The Miami Heat's fairytale season continues after setting up an NBA Finals showdown with the Los Angeles Lakers at the expense of the Boston Celtics.

Bam Adebayo led the way as the Heat topped the Celtics 125-113 to seal a 4-2 series victory in the Eastern Conference finals on Sunday.

The Heat had not reached the Finals since losing to the San Antonio Spurs in the 2014 showpiece, while LeBron James was still in Miami.

Miami were not expected to challenge for the championship after missing the playoffs last season, having finished 10th in the Eastern Conference, but Jimmy Butler's arrival has helped transform the Heat.

Butler put up 22 points, but it was Adebayo who ignited the Heat with a season-high 32 points and 14 rebounds in Game 6 at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.

Tyler Herro added 19 points off the bench, while veteran Andre Iguodala dazzled – going five for five from the field and four for four from three-point range for 15 points as the Heat advanced to the Finals for the sixth time.

The Celtics bowed out, despite Jaylen Brown's 26 points and Jayson Tatum's double-double of 24 points and career-high 11 assists.

Kemba Walker and Marcus Smart also had 20 points apiece for Boston.

 

Heat face Lakers

The NBA Finals will get underway on Wednesday. The top-seeded Lakers will be looking to claim their first championship since 2010.

Related items

  • Former NBA champion Bogut announces retirement Former NBA champion Bogut announces retirement

    Former Golden State Warriors and Milwaukee Bucks center Andrew Bogut has retired from professional basketball.

    Bogut, 36, left the Sydney Kings in May and had hoped to play for Australia at the Tokyo Olympics, which have been pushed back to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    But the veteran, who was the top pick in the 2005 NBA Draft and won a championship with the Warriors in 2015, has decided to end his career.

    "The decision that I made and where I will be signing for next season is absolutely nowhere. I'll be retiring from professional basketball, effective immediately," he said on his podcast, Rogue Bogues, on Tuesday.

    "We're in late November, early December, I would've made this decision earlier if it wasn't for the postponement of the Olympics. I was hoping to get to 2020 Tokyo Games and then calling it a day after that, that would've been my fourth Olympics and selfishly obviously it would've been a great accolade to have four Olympic Games under your belt, but it's just not meant to be.

    "I just can't physically and mentally get to 2021 with the way the body's been. I could, on a lot of painkillers and a lot of physical and mental anguish, but it's just not worth it at this point of my career.

    "I'm really starting to value my health away from the court and my health when I'm 40 and 45 and 50. Some people might say it's just seven more months of training and commitments and I'm at a point where I just can't do it."

    Drafted by the Bucks in 2005, Bogut spent seven seasons in Milwaukee before joining the Warriors in 2012.

    Bogut helped the Warriors end a 40-year wait for an NBA championship with their success in 2015.

    Spells with the Dallas Mavericks, Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Lakers followed before Bogut signed with the Kings and was named the 2019 NBL MVP, while he also had another stint with the Warriors.

    He finished his NBA career averaging 9.6 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game in 706 regular-season appearances.

  • Hornets complete sign-and-trade with Celtics for Hayward Hornets complete sign-and-trade with Celtics for Hayward

    The Charlotte Hornets completed the acquisition of Gordon Hayward in a sign-and-trade with the Boston Celtics, it was announced on Sunday.

    Hayward – an unrestricted free agent – moves to the Hornets along with a 2023 and 2024 second-round NBA Draft pick in exchange for a protected 2022 second-round selection.

    While terms of the contract were not disclosed, Hayward has reportedly signed a four-year, $120million deal in Charlotte.

    Hayward was due to earn $34.2m with the Celtics in 2020-21, but the 2017 All-Star opted to leave Boston after three years.

    "We are thrilled to welcome Gordon and his family to the Hornets organisation and Charlotte," said Hornets president of basketball operations and general manager Mitch Kupchak.

    "Gordon is an NBA All-Star, a proven scorer and playmaker and a tough competitor that will fit well into the needs of our team.

    "We believe that his basketball talent, NBA experience and veteran leadership will make a positive impact on our young, talented team as it continues to develop."

    Hayward left the Utah Jazz for the Celtics on a four-year max contract via free agency in 2017, but he endured a difficult time in Boston.

    The ninth pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, Hayward suffered a gruesome fractured tibia and dislocated ankle in his first game for the Celtics three years ago.

    Hayward struggled to recapture his best form the following season, and the 30-year-old sustained a broken bone in his hand in November before suffering a sprained right ankle during Boston's sweep of the Philadelphia 76ers in the opening round of last season's playoffs in Orlando.

    He did not return until midway through the Eastern Conference finals against the Miami Heat.

    Hayward averaged 17.5 points, 6.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game for the Celtics last season, having averaged 11.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 2018-19.

    Since entering the league, Hayward is averaging 15.3 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game.

  • NBA preseason to get underway on December 11 NBA preseason to get underway on December 11

    The NBA's preseason will start on December 11 ahead of the 2020-21 campaign, the league announced.

    There will be a total of 49 games during the preseason, which will conclude on December 19.

    Each NBA team will play a minimum of two and a maximum of four games – at least one at home and one away – with the 72-game regular season set to tip off on December 22.

    LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers are eyeing back-to-back titles heading into the new season.

    The Lakers ended their 10-year wait for a championship after topping the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals inside the Orlando bubble at Walt Disney World Resort amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    The Lakers' success tied the longest postseason drought in NBA history that a team ended by winning the title, matching the 1977 Portland Trail Blazers.

    James also became the first player in NBA, MLB, NFL and NHL history to win the Finals MVP award for three different teams, having also been crowned Most Valuable Player with the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Heat, as he celebrated a fourth championship.

    Anthony Davis and James became the first pair of team-mates in NBA history to each have 500-plus points and 200-plus rebounds in the same postseason.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.