The Los Angeles Lakers investment in Anthony Davis has paid off. LeBron James needed more stars to push the purple and gold back to its winning ways though there were plans for a third star to complement James and Davis. Jimmy Butler could have been that guy.

Ironically, the Lakers are now facing Butler in the 2020 NBA Finals. Butler opted to join Miami following a trade with the Philadelphia 76ers. But if the Lakers moved fast, they could have gotten the 31-year-old, the Orange County Register reported.

The Lakers of course failed but this was because they were busy trying to take in Kawhi Leonard. As most know, that pursuit failed and Leonard ended up joining the Los Angeles Clippers. Had they singed Butler, it could have turned out either good or bad.

For one, most know that Butler had issues co-existing with other NBA stars. This happened with the Minnesota Timberwolves and also with the Philadelphia 76ers. But the difference with the Lakers is that Butler had to contend with James, someone a whole lot different. Would it have worked?

The transformation of Butler with the Heat is surprising to most. Many felt that Pat Riley wasted time on Butler, someone who struggled to get out of his shell. But what happened was the opposite. Butler showed what he can do if placed in the franchise seat and such has returned dividends. The Heat were not even in discussions as a team to watch or make the NBA Finals. Hence, their run this 2019-20 season is unfathomable.

Had Butler joined the Lakers, he would have been a sidekick. He is now the top guy for the Heat and reaching the NBA Finals is already an overachievement. The Lakers are favored. According to the Wall Street Journal, they were 60-1 long shots. Hence, it would be foolish to discount the Heat. A reversal is not impossible. One just has to look at their trail. They brought down big teams such as the Milwaukee Bucks and the Boston Celtics.

For Butler, he is not doing it alone. He has other players helping out such as Bam Adebayo, Duncan Robinson and Tyler Herro. The Lakers are more talented but the unpredictability of the Heat could throw the purple and gold off.

Jimmy Butler of the Miami Heat Jimmy Butler of the Miami Heat Getty Images | Kevin C. Cox