Although the Los Angeles Lakers stretched the lead to 18 points multiple times in Game 2 of the 2020 NBA Finals on Friday (US time), the Miami Heat wouldn't go away.
They out-scored Los Angeles 39-35 in the period -- but in the end they just didn't have sufficient stopping power and they couldn't get the deficit below nine points in the final quarter.
The Lakers won 124-114 to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-7 series.
"We need a little bit more from everybody, whatever that is," said backup center Kelly Olynyk, who finished 24 points and 9 rebounds, and provided Miami with a second-half spark off the bench.
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra acknowledged that the Heat face a tough challenge against the bigger, physical Lakers.
"In those moments of truth when we had opportunities to get the game closer it usually seemed to end up in an offensive rebound or something near the basket," Spoelstra said.
"But this is the deal. If you want something badly enough you'll figure out how to overcome it."
The Lakers connected on 55.5% of their shots from the field in the opening half. They were less successful from three-point range but not from lack of trying, connecting on nine of their whopping 27 first-half attempts from beyond the arc.
They finished with 16 3-pointers on an astonishing 47 attempts.
Davis poured it on in the third quarter, piling up 15 points on an array of shots -- jumpers, a step-back 3 and a driving floater just the beginning.
"They have great size and Anthony Davis is an elite player. We're trying to get something accomplished and you just have to go to another level," added Spoelstra, whose team will try to do just that in Game 3 on Sunday. -- With a report from Agence France-Presse