NBA Finals 2020: Heat vs. Lakers Schedule, Odds and Early Preview

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistSeptember 28, 2020

Los Angeles Lakers' LeBron James (23) talks with players as confetti falls after the Lakers beat the Denver Nuggets in an NBA conference final playoff basketball game Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The Lakers won 117-107 to win the series 4-1. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

It's the powerhouse Los Angeles Lakers against the upstart, fifth-seeded Miami Heat.

It's LeBron James' current team against LeBron James' old team.

It's Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo against the King and Anthony Davis.

It's Miami's incredible supporting cast against playoff Rondo.

There are plenty of intriguing storylines for NBA fans as the Finals approach.

Howard Beck of Bleacher Report shared the NBA Finals schedule, which can be seen below along with the odds and a quick preview for the series.

          

2020 NBA Finals Schedule

Game 1: Wednesday, Sept. 30 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC

Game 2: Friday, Oct. 2 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC

Game 3: Sunday, Oct. 4 at 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Game 4: Tuesday, Oct. 6 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC

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Game 5*: Friday, Oct. 9 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC

Game 6*: Sunday, Oct. 11 at 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Game 7*: Tuesday, Oct. 13 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC

*if necessary

          

Odds (per FanDuel, as of Sunday at 11:55 p.m. ET)

Lakers -370

Heat +290

          

Quick Preview

Miami may be the underdog, but it actually matches up with the Lakers fairly well on paper compared to some of the Purple and Gold's other playoff competition.

The Portland Trail Blazers didn't have the wings to throw at LeBron while Jusuf Nurkic and Hassan Whiteside battled Davis down low. The Houston Rockets didn't have the bigs to hang with Davis in their small-ball lineup.

And even though he is brilliant offensively, Nikola Jokic was no real match for Davis defensively as the Lakers took down the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals.

However, the Heat have Adebayo to help counter Davis. He is athletic and versatile enough to keep up with his fellow University of Kentucky product and should help keep him in relative check.

Miami can also turn toward the combination of Butler, Jae Crowder and Andre Iguodala to help slow down James, which is a group of wing defenders few in the league can match.

It needs to be noted there will be no complete stopping of James and Davis. The former is one of the best players in NBA history who is playing in his 10th NBA Finals, and the latter is a nearly unguardable big who can score from almost anywhere on the floor.

Still, the wings and Adebayo can at least prevent Los Angeles' dynamic duo from completely taking over, which could set the stage for Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson and the rest of the Miami supporting cast to win the series elsewhere.

The Lakers are the favorites for good reason, but don't overlook the Heat just yet.