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Lakers Eliminate Warriors, West Finals Next

Los Angeles Lakers Beat The Golden State Warriors

The Los Angeles Lakers handled their business and knocked out the defending champion Golden State Warriors in six games. Los Angeles becomes the second seventh seed to reach the conference finals since 1984, the first being the 1987 Seattle Supersonics.

In a postseason full of upsets and unexpected turns, two play-in teams are now in the conference finals, the eight-seed Miami Heat being the other team.

LA is now 7-0 at home (including the play-in game) this playoff run, which is impressive being able to protect homecourt while stealing homecourt advantage from the Memphis Grizzlies and Warriors. However, there was a great deal of speculation coming into Game 6. 

Dodging A Bullet

Big man Anthony Davis would suffer an accidental elbow to the face from Kevon Looney during the fourth quarter of game five, resulting in Davis leaving the game and not returning. In a report by Chris Haynes, Davis needed assistance leaving the bench due to his shaky nature when walking. Then was escorted in a wheelchair and that opened the door to if AD had suffered a concussion. 

Luckily, early diagnosis and tests showed that the NBA champion had avoided a concussion and video surfaced of Davis walking under his own power out of the arena and seemed to look fine. Ultimately, he was ruled as probable for Game 6 which could have been a huge blow and caveat to the purple and gold potentially losing a 3-1 series lead.

Game 6 Breakdown

Similar to the Grizzlies’ series, Game 6 was seen as the must-win because losing on home floor and heading back out on the road in a do-or-die Game 7 may not have fared well for the Lakers. 

LA came out firing, getting out to an early 17-point lead. Everything was clicking and all things considered, the team never looked back. This was impressive due to the firepower that the Warriors have with the likes of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. Curry would finish the night with 32 points (11-28 shooting). Bench player Donte DiVincenzo was only other Warrior in double figures, with 16 shooting 6-12 from the field.

The supporting cast for the defending champions was nowhere in site. Thompson finished with 8 points on 3-19 shooting, and Andrew Wiggins finished with 6 points on 2-8 from the field. Lastly, Jordan Poole, who had an explosive Game 1, struggled the rest of the series, including this game. Poole only scored 7 points, 3-10 shooting in 23 minutes.

Los Angeles’ defense was stellar in the first-round matchup and it was certainly going to be tested heading into the semi-finals. Granted you can’t stop the Warriors’ dynamic offense, but there is hope to contain it to some degree. To hold this team to the final scores of 97, 101 (twice), and 112 in today’s NBA should not go unnoticed.

On the other side of the ball, the starting five for the Lakers stepped up in a huge way. LeBron James had an efficient 30-9-9 game and D’Angelo Russell with 19 points. Austin Reaves, who has struggled this series, found his groove with 23-5-6 including a half-court buzzer beater to end the half. Davis had a double-double with 17 points and 20 rebounds. While he wasn’t as aggressive on offense, fans could still feel his presence inside the paint.

The Warriors would make runs to cut the deficit throughout the game, but would never take the lead due to timely responses from the Lakers. After the 3rd quarter, LA coasted to a win and advanced to the Western Conference Finals.

What’s Next?

With some NBA bubble deja vu, the first-seeded Denver Nuggets will matchup against Los Angeles in the Conference Finals. Denver will surely look for revenge. Darvin Ham and his staff are going to have their hands full guarding Jamal Murraytwo-time MVP Nikola Jokic, and others. Denver provides LA’s most challenging series yet, as they are only four wins away from making the NBA Finals.

This storied franchise looked like a trainwreck early in the season, being the 13th seed and a poorly constructed roster. Yet, general manager Rob Pelinka was able to flip their roster around at the deadline and formed chemistry on the fly.

Regardless of where they end up, this will be a postseason run to be remembered.


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