LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — LeBron James woke up from his gameday nap Tuesday and decided it was time to send his Los Angeles Lakers teammates a message.
He grabbed his phone and told the Lakers they were facing a must-win game.
"I felt that vibe. I felt that pressure," James said. "I felt like, for me personally, this was one of the biggest games of my career."
James and the Lakers are back in control of these NBA Finals, one win away from the franchise’s 17th championship.
James finished with 28 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists, Anthony Davis‘ 3-pointer with 39.5 seconds left finally settled matters and the Lakers beat the Miami Heat 102-96 in Game 4.
The Lakers lead 3-1 and can win the title when the series resumes Friday.
"Big-time play. Big-time moment," James said of Davis’ 3-pointer. "Not only for A.D., but for our ballclub and for our franchise."
Davis finished with 22 points, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 15 and Danny Green added 10 for the Lakers, who didn’t trail at any point in the final 20-plus minutes.
Kelly Olynyk of Kamloops had four points in 12 minutes of action for the Heat.
The Lakers are now 56-0 this season when leading going into the fourth quarter.
Jimmy Butler scored 22 points for Miami, which got 21 from Tyler Herro, 17 from Duncan Robinson and 15 from Bam Adebayo — who returned after missing two games with a neck injury.
"I just loved seeing our guys compete. I love how they respond in between those four lines," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "This was a throwback game and there were some moments of truth there at the end, and probably the bottom line is they won those moments of truth."
He’s right. Whenever Miami had something going, the Lakers snuffed it out.