LeBron James overcame a sluggish start and Anthony Davis made a key three-pointer and block late on as Los Angeles Lakers beat Miami Heat 102-96 on Tuesday to take a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven NBA Finals.

Coming off a win in their last meeting, Heat played with confidence early on as Jimmy Butler went 5-5 from the field, including a jump shot at the buzzer that cut Lakers’ lead to 27-22 at the end of the first quarter.

The Miami defence frustrated Lakers in a back-and-forth second quarter and Heat went into the break down two points after rookie Tyler Herro’s put-back jumper went in just before halftime.

James scored just eight points and committed five turnovers in the first half but was much better in the second, finishing with 28 points including a driving layup where he was fouled after Heat tied the game 83-83 with 6:22 left to play.

With less than a minute left, Davis hit a long three-pointer to push the advantage to nine and blocked a Butler layup attempt to seal the win and put Lakers one victory away from their first championship since 2010.

Game Five is on Friday.

The result: LA Lakers 102 (James 28, Davis 22) bt Miami Heat 96 (Butler 22, Herro 21). Lakers 3-1.



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