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Riley: Lakers' title will always have 'asterisk' due to Adebayo, Dragic injuries

Michael Reaves / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Miami Heat president Pat Riley is still confident in what could've been.

The longtime Heat executive spoke to reporters Friday for the first time since his team fell in six games in The Finals to the Los Angeles Lakers. While he commended the Lakers on securing the title, Riley suggested things may have transpired differently if All-Star center Bam Adebayo and veteran guard Goran Dragic were fully healthy for Miami.

"I would like to see what it would be like with everybody whole," the 75-year-old said, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. "We'll get our chance again. The Lakers have the greatest player in the game today in LeBron (James) and Anthony Davis.

"They beat us fair and squarely. But there will always be that asterisk; if we had Bam and Goran 100% - Goran was our leading scorer (entering the Finals) - it might have gone to a seventh game."

Adebayo emerged as one of the most integral players on the Heat this season but was forced out of Game 1 early with a shoulder strain. The 23-year-old center then missed Games 2 and 3, after which the Heat went down 2-1.

Dragic, meanwhile, suffered a torn plantar fascia in Game 1 that immediately put him at risk of missing the rest of the series. He did return in Game 6, but the 34-year-old still looked uncomfortable on the court as the Lakers clinched their 17th championship.

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