NBA

LeBron James’ Record in Conference Finals Gives the Lakers a Good Shot at Making the Finals

The LA Lakers are back in the Western Conference Finals for the first time since 2010. LeBron James has played a big part in turning the Lakers to a championship-contending team. 

James has had a lot of success playing in Conference Finals. His record shows why the Lakers will have a good chance of making it to the NBA Finals.

The Lakers have dominated during the 2020 playoffs

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Going into the playoffs, the Lakers were the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference. They finished the regular season with a record of 52-19. At the age of 35, James was playing some of the best basketball of his career in his 17th season. The numbers he put up were very impressive. 

He finished the season averaging 25.3 points, 10.2 assists, and 7.8 rebounds. James was first in the league in assists and was second on his team in points and rebounds. With Anthony Davis on the team, James did not have to rely on scoring the ball so much. He focused on getting his team involved and making the right plays. That carried on into the playoffs. 

In the first round, the Lakers took on the Portland Trail Blazers. Portland was one of the hottest teams in the NBA bubble, and Damian Lillard was the bubble’s best player. It was the first time since 2013 that the Lakers made the playoffs, and they were swept in the first round by the San Antonio Spurs. This year was a different story. After losing the first game of the series to Portland, the Lakers won four straight and advanced to the second round. 

It was the same story in the second round as the Lakers took on the Houston Rockets. Houston won the first game, and then LA dominated the series, winning the next four. Portland or Houston did not have an answer for LA’s size, and when you have two of the top players in the league, it’s hard for opponents to match up against that.

2010 was the last time the Lakers played in the Western Conference Finals

It’s been 10 years since the Lakers last played in the Western Conference Finals. During the 2010 Western Conference Finals, the Lakers took on the Phoenix Suns. The Lakers won the first two games of the series, and then the Suns won the next two to tie the series at 2-2. With the series tied, the Lakers wanted to close out the series, and that’s exactly what they did.

Behind two impressive performances from Kobe Bryant, the Lakers defeated the Suns 103-101 in Game 5 and 111-103 in Game 6. Bryant had 30 and 37 points, respectively, during those games. The Lakers went on to take on the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals, and LA won their second straight title. So the Lakers have success playing in their last Western Conference Finals and will look to do the same this year.

Lebron’s record in the Conference Finals is impressive

James has won his fair share of games in the playoffs. He recently passed Derek Fisher for sole possession on the all-time list for most playoff wins when he won his 162nd playoff game. Not only does James have a lot of playoff wins under his belt, but he has also been successful in Conference Finals. James has played in a total of 10 Conference Finals series during his career. 

He has a record of 9-1 in the Conference Finals, and his lone series loss came in 2009 when he was with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers lost to the Orlando Magic in six games. Even though he’s never played in the Western Conference Finals, he’s still had a lot of success in the series. This can be the start of another impressive streak or record that James puts together during his career. James knows a thing or two about winning in the Conference Finals, and he will look to do that with the Lakers for the first time as a member of the team.