Pat Riley was on the winning end of two of LeBron James’ NBA championships. LeBron won his first two NBA titles with Riley’s Miami Heat, going back-to-back in 2012 and ’13.
This year, though, Riley was on the losing end.
LeBron, now with the Los Angeles Lakers, took down Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat in six games. The Lakers were led by LeBron and Anthony Davis, while Butler led a Heat team that was missing Goran Dragic and Bam Adebayo for much of the NBA Finals.
Riley was asked this week if the Lakers’ win over the Heat has an asterisk due to Miami’s injuries. The legendary NBA figure gave an honest response.
“I would like to see what it would be like with everybody whole. We’ll get our chance again. The Lakers have the greatest player in the game today in LeBron [James] and Anthony Davis,” Riley told the Miami Herald.
“They beat us fair and squarely. But there will be always be that asterisk; if we had Bam and Goran 100 percent — Goran was our leading scorer [entering the Finals] — it might have gone to a seventh game.”
Saying the Lakers beat you fair and square and then adding that there’s an asterisk is an interesting way to go about it.
That’s the NBA, though. The league is never lacking in drama.