The Los Angeles Lakers were able to edge out the L.A. Clippers during their hypothetical showdown at Staples Center in NBA 2K20’s simulation of the Western Conference Finals, setting up an NBA Finals showdown with the Milwaukee Bucks.
The matchup featured two of the league’s most high-profile stars in LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo, and validated what most fans anticipated was coming to fruition in June if not for the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
As NBA 2K20 looks to fill the basketball void, they have simulated the season and playoffs since real action was suspended. The prospect of the Lakers being able to finish what they started after generating plenty of hype during the offseason was hardly far-fetched.
Of course, the fashion in which the simulation had them do it in may have come as a bit of a surprise. Milwaukee secured home-court advantage thanks to their superior regular season record, however, Los Angeles quickly managed to turn the tables with a blowout victory in Game 1.
LeBron part of another 3-1 series comeback and Anthony Davis named Finals MVP as Lakers defeat Bucks. #2KSim
Game 1: LAL, 129-89
Game 2: MIL, 106-105 (OT)
Game 3: MIL, 96-79
Game 4: MIL, 131-101
Game 5: LAL, 141-112
Game 6: LAL, 108-103
Game 7: LAL, 103-101 pic.twitter.com/Hq5DLA45zT
— Matthew Moreno (@MMoreno1015) May 15, 2020
On the verge of taking a 2-0 lead back home, Antetokounmpo was able to lead his team to a one-point victory over the Lakers in overtime.
The clutch win gave the Bucks plenty of momentum coming into Staples Center as they put together back-to-back dominant wins to take a 3-1 series lead back home. Although they were in good position to clinch the championship back home, James found himself in rather familiar territory working from an insurmountable deficit.
The Lakers stormed back by putting together another blowout win on the road and they successfully managed to turn the tables with a nail-biter in Game 6 to even the series. At this point, the writing was on the wall for the purple and gold to earn their 17th NBA Finals championship in franchise history.
And while James was a central figure, it was Anthony Davis who earned NBA Finals MVP honors. Davis averaged 24.2 points, 13.8 rebounds, 2 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.7 blocks over the seven-game simulation.
Although it remains to be seen if this season will have a chance to crown a champion, there is no question that the simulation has only served to add fuel to the fire for a potential Lakers- Bucks matchup.