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NBA Finals Game 1 Preview

The NBA Finals is one of the most bet on sporting events in the world. It doesn't quite have the draw of the Super Bowl, but it is in that second tier. You can bet on virtually any aspect of the game, from which team makes the first 3-pointer to how many free throws Lebron James will make.

The Lakers are a 4.5-point favorite and the over/under is set at 217.5.


Los Angeles averages 113.4 ppg on offense and gives up 106.5 ppg on defense. Miami averages 112 ppg on offense and gives up 107.2 ppg on defense. The numbers don't tell the whole story because each team has had several changes in their rotations and lineups.

Avery Bradley isn't in the bubble with the Lakers. Kendrick Nunn, third in rookie of the year voting, has been exiled from Miami's rotation during the postseason after averaging 15.3 ppg in the regular season. Javale McGee's role has been fluctuation depending on the series, while Dwight Howard was moved into the starting lineup against Denver.

Anything can happen in the bubble. But now this is for all the marbles. The adjustments from these teams will be fascinating to watch throughout the first game. Erik Spoelstra had the Heat playing a lot of zone defense against the Celtics. Will he do the same against the Lakers?

Los Angeles has started a big lineup all season, but Miami plays Jae Crowder (6'7) at power forward. Will Frank Vogel decide to go small to match the Heat or stay big and hope it proves effective?

All the coaching, role players, unique circumstances are a big part of this series. But the NBA has been and always will be about stars. The Lakers will go as far as Lebron James and Anthony Davis go. The Heat will go as far as Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo take them.

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