The stage is set as the Lakers are scheduled to take on the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals that starts on September 30th. While the Lakers are favorites to win, the Heat shouldn’t be written off so easily. Both teams are 12-3 in the playoffs the year and have plenty of talent to match the other.
“The foundational piece of ‘Heat Culture’ could have been a part of Lakers Culture. Butler was discussed as an option when the Lakers considered how to use their max salary slot they cleared after the trade for Anthony Davis.”
A trio of James, Davis, and Butler could have formed the only super team in the league during 2020, but the Lakers saw Kawhi Leonard as a better option to do so. Of course, we all know how that went as Leonard opted to sign the Los Angeles Clippers and convince Paul George to join him. While the Lakers’ eyes were on Leonard, Butler ended up joining the Heat via a sign and trade deal with the Philadelphia 76ers.
It’s safe to assume that the Lakers would’ve been guaranteed a title this year had Butler joined the team, while the Heat would have assuredly missed the playoffs entirely. Instead, the two teams are set to face off with Butler, Bam Adebayo, and Goran Dragic needing to play at a high level to take down the duo of James and Davis.