(Reuters) – Heavy favorites Los Angeles Lakers overcame a sluggish start to dismantle the Miami Heat 116-98 in Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Wednesday.
The Heat got a 13-point leg up in the first quarter but the lead was shortlived, as the Lakers drained 11 three-pointers to complete a 30-point turnaround and close out the first half, while Miami’s defense evaporated inside the NBA’s quarantined Orlando, Florida, campus.
The Lakers kept the pressure up as two of the Heat’s biggest playmakers – point guard Goran Dragic and forward Bam Adebayo – exited the game with injuries.
Dragic, Miami’s leading scorer in the post-season, suffered a foot injury in the second quarter, while Adebayo left in the third with a shoulder strain after twice colliding with Lakers center Dwight Howard.
Sixteen-time All-Star LeBron James, competing in his 50th NBA Finals game, scored 25 points with 13 rebounds and nine assists.
Reporting by Amy Tennery; Editing by Michael Perry