Monday, 12 October 2020 09:09

 

Photo Credit:Getty Images.

The Los Angeles Lakers ended a decade-long wait for a 17th NBA title as they beat the Miami Heat 106-93 to seal a 4-2 series victory.

The Finals' most valuable player (MVP) LeBron James posted a triple double - scoring 28 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists - with both Anthony Davis and Rajon Rondo adding 19 points.

Victory ties the Lakers with the Boston Celtics for the most NBA championships.

"It means a lot to represent this franchise," said James.

"I told [Lakers president] Jeanie [Buss] when I came here that I was going to put this franchise back in the position where it belongs.

"We just want our respect. Rob [Pelinka] wants his respect, coach [Frank] Vogel wants his respect, our organisation wants its respect, Lakers nation wants its respect.

"And I want my respect too."

Before this season the Lakers' had failed to reach the play-offs for six consecutive years and their long-awaited success comes after a campaign like no other.

The NBA Finals would have been done and dusted in the spring were it not for the global spread of coronavirus that shut the season down on 11 March, hours after it was declared a pandemic and several players tested positive for the virus.

The season eventually re-started on 31 July, but with no fans courtside. Played behind closed doors at Walt Disney World in Florida, players entered a bio-secure bubble - which the Lakers will now leave after more than 90 days away from friends and family.

They last won an NBA title in 2010, but it was those six years when they failed to reach the play-offs that best illustrated their fall from grace.