N.B.A. Finals Game 5 Live Score and Tracker

Marc Stein


The Los Angeles Lakers are one win away from a championship in their N.B.A. finals series against the Miami Heat.

A win would give the Lakers a record-tying 17th championship, but the Heat have shown their resilience and, especially in Jimmy Butler’s case, their relentlessness in the face of daunting odds. But the Lakers’ LeBron James, who is going for his fourth ring, and Anthony Davis, who is going for his first, are motivated to end the series tonight.

The two teams have likewise shot nearly identical from deep — Miami is 12-for-26 and the Lakers are 12-for-27 — with 9:05 to play and the Heat holding a 93-85 edge.

3rd Quarter: Robinson and Crowder come through for the Heat.

The Heat were the beneficiaries of two four-point plays in the third quarter.

They needed both, too, because they can’t shake the Lakers even with Jimmy Butler surging and Duncan Robinson having contributed a welcome 20 points entering the fourth quarter.

Miami took an 88-82 lead into the final period thanks in part to the four-point plays converted by Jae Crowder and Robinson. And Butler needs just one rebound for another triple-double. He has 27 points, 10 assists and 9 rebounds to lead the Heat. LeBron James (28) and Anthony Davis (22) have combined for 50 of the Lakers’ 82 points.

Jimmy Butler is torching the Lakers.

If the 171st game staged in the N.B.A. bubble turns out to be the last game at Walt Disney World, at least it is, rather fittingly a good one.

Miami’s Jimmy Butler continues to hold his own in a one-on-one duel with the Lakers’ LeBron James. Somehow Butler is also making a run at approaching the remarkable levels he hit in the Heat’s Game 3 victory — which few expected him to repeat.

Butler had 40 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds in that triple-double Game 3 masterpiece. Butler had 22 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists by halftime this Game 5 and recorded perhaps his toughest bucket of the series with 6:41 to play in the third quarter, when he followed a missed 3-pointer by Jae Crowder with a rugged rebound basket.

The Lakers’ Dwight Howard, who scuffled with Butler along the baseline in the first quarter, was whistled for committing a flagrant 1 foul on the play; Howard’s right arm connected hard with Butler’s head as Butler made the layup.

“On the morning of October 10, the channel of CCTV Sports will broadcast the fifth game of the N.B.A. finals,” the network said in a post in Chinese on Weibo, a Chinese social media platform. “Welcome everyone to watch at the time!”

Find out why China made the change now.

What makes Jimmy Butler different?

Before the season, Marc Stein talked to Butler about his road to stardom in the N.B.A.

Butler has done a lot of changing since his arrival in the N.B.A. as the 30th overall pick of the Chicago Bulls in 2011. He blossomed into a four-time All-Star with a reputation as a hypercompetitive and demanding teammate, unafraid to also challenge coaches, team executives, whomever.

In an interview with Yahoo Sports last season, Butler acknowledged that he could rightly be described as “confrontational.” He has also described himself as “a little extra at times.”

Butler said he does what he wants, despite what people may think of him.

As he prepares to begin his new work life with the Heat, Butler is pushing back harder against those around the N.B.A. who have criticized him for how much he has changed from his early days in the league. Back then, he was known as a coach-pleaser who liked to accentuate his Texas roots by wearing cowboy boots and oversize belt buckles, and listening to country music.

“I like it,” Butler said of the knock that he has changed too much. “I am different. I’ve picked up a lot of different hobbies. I don’t want to stay the same.

“I do what makes me happy. Some people just don’t like it. Some people just don’t want people to be happy.”

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