The Los Angeles Lakers are on the cusp of bringing the Larry O'Brien back to Hollywood as they are now just one win away from being crowned the 2020 NBA Champions. But, due to everyone going with regards to COVID-19, the city of LA might have to wait a bit more before they can celebrate their impending championship.
Both Staples Center and L.A. Live in downtown Los Angeles has opted not to air Game 5 of the NBA Finals between the Lakers and the Miami Heat in any of their exterior LED screens. In the same announcement done via Twitter, the arena also mentioned that fans are encouraged to watch the game at home and celebrate responsibly.
STAPLES Center & L.A. LIVE will not be airing/showing tomorrow’s NBA Finals game or potential post game celebrations on any of the exterior digital signage. Vehicle & pedestrian access will be limited & @Lakers fans encouraged to watch the game and celebrate responsibly at home.
— Crypto.com Arena (@cryptocomarena) October 8, 2020
Though the series has at least four quarters to go and Game 5 is really still anybody's ball game – a premature notice from the city is more than welcome. Currently, California is still at the top of the list when it comes to COVID-19 cases in the US with a total of 847,000 active cases as of writing. Given that physical distancing might be close to impossibly in celebrating an NBA championship, it might be smart for Laker fans to just stay safe at home.
It's been a whole decade since Lakers fans have been able to celebrate a championship so you do understand the excitement. The last time they were in the Finals was in 2010 when the great Kobe Bryant won his fifth and final championship. The anticipation has been building ever since LeBron James decided to bring his talents to the City of Angels last year and with him and Anthony Davis possibly 48 minutes away from winning their first ring together, you do get a feeling that the city is just about ready to explode.
Game 5 between the Lakers and the Heat tips off at 9 PM on Friday.