From the beginning of SB Nation's hypothetical NBA 3 on 3 Tournament, the suspicion has been that the Miami Heat would face the Los Angeles Lakers in the Finals. After all, what single NBA team could offer a threesome to compete with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh from Miami or Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard from the Lakers? Indeed, no single team could beat the Lakers -- but three players from the different teams did.
At the beginning of the tournament, we created two extra teams, one from each conference, in order to round out the tournament field to 32 and avoid first round byes. Those extra teams were comprised of players that were left off their own teams' three man selections. In the West, that ended up being James Harden of the Thunder, Zach Randolph of the Grizzlies and Pau Gasol of the Lakers. The Leftovers team faced Pau's teammates in the Western Conference Finals and upset the favored Lakers. L.A. was given a 60 percent chance of winning any single game against the Leftovers by our panel of experts, but the random element of rolling dice to determine the winners has produced several upsets in this tournament and it did so once again. With the Lakers wanting rolls of 60 or below, the first roll came up huge -- a 94. Game 2 didn't go much better for the favorites -- an 84 resulted in the purple and gold being swept from the tournament.
I was a little surprised at how relatively close my fellow panelists called this match. In fact, two of the five actually favored the Leftovers. But in the end, not a single panelist rated the Lakers better than a 75 percent favorite, so these rolls would almost certainly have doomed them no matter who was on the panel.
The Leftovers now move on to face the Heat in the Finals of this crazy 3 on 3 Tournament. No threesome from any NBA team could down the Lakers, and none could beat the Heat either. But maybe this trio of leftovers from three different teams is the group that can defeat the NBA champs.
For a complete look at the SB Nation 3 on 3 Tournament, check back with this StoryStream.