Do you believe in the concept of trap games? Although there has been no real scientific sensation about their existence, they are almost accepted as a matter of belief in sports circles. It may make us a bit superstitious but we have seen it many times. If you’re not familiar with the term, it’s something like this: a heavy-handed team on a winning strike is weak, possibly shorthand, playing against an opponent and determined that somehow they lose. Sometimes big.
Probably a factor as to why they’re doing so poorly: No team is good enough to win every game, and no team can lose every game. Maybe. Sometimes, though, it feels like a team becomes overconfident and it confronts a team that rightly feels that they have nothing to lose. Results … Good results are a lot like what we saw in Game 3 of the NBA Finals
The Los Angeles Lakers went 2-0 up against the Miami Heat team that left both Adebayo and Goran Dragik missing. The conversation before the game wasn’t a hit that the heat could come back again, which doesn’t seem to be out of the question, whether it was worth playing the next two games. It’s going to be a broom.
With the exception of two of their three key openers, Miami had just one path to victory: their leader Jimmy Butler was going to play a monster game and the Lakers had to make some mistakes. Well, both of them happened on Sunday. Butler kept one of the greatest individual games of all time in the history of the final, taking advantage of a Lakers team that was committed to an unreasonable number of unreasonable turnovers. The Lakers seemed to believe this hype, the hit-outs were theirs and as a result, we only had one series on hand.
Here’s the problem: It’s hard to believe these two things in the second game in a row. Butler can’t expect to be a 40-point triple-double in his second consecutive game, and what we know about LeBron James tells us that he won’t let his team (and the Lakers have too much of his team) off the hook. In other words, Game 4 will not be a trap game after Sunday’s tragically unnecessary effort, they know exactly how the heat can beat them.
If the Lakers can win, they will go 3-1 up in the series and have all the pressure on Miami to win three straight matches. It’s better than going down 3-0 but not with the whole. However, if the heat can get this far … well we’ve got some unexpectedly competitive NBA finals between us.
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