Rahul Sharma

1989 NBA Playoffs

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Season  1988–89
Teams  16
1989 NBA Playoffs

The 1989 NBA Playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 1988–89 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Conference champion Detroit Pistons defeating the Western Conference champion Los Angeles Lakers 4 games to 0 in the NBA Finals. Joe Dumars was named NBA Finals MVP.

Contents

The Pistons had one of the most dominant playoff runs in NBA history, finishing 15–2 with their only losses to the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Lakers won the Western Conference title without losing a game. They were swept in the Finals by the Pistons, due in part to season-ending injuries suffered by Magic Johnson and Byron Scott. The Lakers thus earned the distinction of being the only team to sweep the first three playoff rounds, then be swept in the NBA Finals.

Chicago advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 1975 (and the first time in Michael Jordan's career), but their season was ended by Detroit for the second straight year. Two rounds earlier, he hit "The Shot" over Craig Ehlo at the buzzer to beat the Cavs.

The Boston Celtics' first-round playoff sweep by the Pistons was the first time they failed to get past the round of 16.

Former Utah Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan made the first of 19 playoff appearances in a 22-year tenure. The only time he missed the playoffs with Utah was 2004–2006. His last playoff appearance was in 1981 with the Bulls. His Jazz were ousted by the Golden State Warriors 3–0, the second time a seventh seed had beaten the second seed in the playoffs. Under Don Nelson, the Warriors became famous for their up-tempo game that made up for an undersized lineup, as well as their ability to create mismatches. The Warriors made history as the only team to beat either of the top two seeds thrice in the NBA Playoffs; they beat the second-seed San Antonio Spurs in 1991 and top-seeded Dallas Mavericks (a team Nelson also coached) in 2007.

Western Conference

Champion: Los Angeles Lakers

1st Round

(1) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (8) Portland Trail Blazers: Lakers win series 3–0

  • Game 1 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (April 27): Los Angeles 128, Portland 108
  • Game 2 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (April 30): Los Angeles 113, Portland 105
  • Game 3 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 3): Los Angeles 116, Portland 108
  • This was the fourth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Lakers winning two of the first three meetings.

    (2) Utah Jazz vs. (7) Golden State Warriors: Warriors win series 3–0

  • Game 1 @ Salt Palace, Salt Lake City (April 27): Golden State 123, Utah 119
  • Game 2 @ Salt Palace, Salt Lake City (April 29): Golden State 99, Utah 91
  • Game 3 @ Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena, Oakland (May 2): Golden State 120, Utah 106
  • This was the second playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Warriors winning the first meeting.

    (3) Phoenix Suns vs. (6) Denver Nuggets: Suns win series 3–0

  • Game 1 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (April 28): Phoenix 104, Denver 103
  • Game 2 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (April 30): Phoenix 132, Denver 114
  • Game 3 @ McNichols Sports Arena, Denver (May 2): Phoenix 130, Denver 121
  • This was the third playoff meeting between these two teams, with each team winning one series apiece.

    (4) Seattle SuperSonics vs. (5) Houston Rockets: Sonics win series 3–1

  • Game 1 @ Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle (April 28): Seattle 111, Houston 107
  • Game 2 @ Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle (April 30): Seattle 109, Houston 97
  • Game 3 @ The Summit, Houston (May 3): Houston 126, Seattle 107
  • Game 4 @ The Summit, Houston (May 5): Seattle 98, Houston 96
  • This was the third playoff meeting between these two teams, with the SuperSonics winning the first two meetings.

    Conference Semifinals

    (1) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (4) Seattle SuperSonics: Lakers win series 4–0

  • Game 1 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 7): Los Angeles 113, Seattle 102
  • Game 2 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 10): Los Angeles 130, Seattle 108
  • Game 3 @ Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle (May 12): Los Angeles 91, Seattle 86
  • Game 4 @ Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle (May 14): Los Angeles 97, Seattle 95 (Lakers posted the greatest comeback in Playoff history by overcoming a 29-point deficit (43–14))
  • This was the fifth playoff meeting between these two teams, with each team winning two series apiece.

    (3) Phoenix Suns vs. (7) Golden State Warriors: Suns win series 4–1

  • Game 1 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (May 6): Phoenix 130, Golden State 103
  • Game 2 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (May 9): Golden State 127, Phoenix 122
  • Game 3 @ Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena, Oakland (May 11): Phoenix 113, Golden State 104
  • Game 4 @ Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena, Oakland (May 13): Phoenix 135, Golden State 99
  • Game 5 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (May 16): Phoenix 116, Golden State 104
  • This was the second playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Suns winning the first meeting.

    Conference Finals

    (1) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (3) Phoenix Suns: Lakers win series 4–0

  • Game 1 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 20): Los Angeles 127, Phoenix 119
  • Game 2 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 23): Los Angeles 101, Phoenix 95
  • Game 3 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (May 26): Los Angeles 110, Phoenix 107
  • Game 4 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (May 28): Los Angeles 122, Phoenix 117
  • This was the sixth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Lakers winning the first five meetings.

    Eastern Conference

    Champion: Detroit Pistons

    1st Round

    (1) Detroit Pistons vs. (8) Boston Celtics: Pistons win series 3–0

  • Game 1 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (April 28): Detroit 101, Boston 91
  • Game 2 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (April 30): Detroit 102, Boston 95
  • Game 3 @ Boston Garden, Boston (May 2): Detroit 100, Boston 85
  • This was the fifth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Celtics winning three of the first four meetings.

    (2) New York Knicks vs. (7) Philadelphia 76ers: Knicks win series 3–0

  • Game 1 @ Madison Square Garden, New York City (April 27): New York 102, Philadelphia 96
  • Game 2 @ Madison Square Garden, New York City (April 29): New York 107, Philadelphia 106
  • Game 3 @ The Spectrum, Philadelphia (May 2): New York 116, Philadelphia 115 (Gerald Wilkins hits the series-winning shot)
  • This was the ninth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the 76ers winning six of the first eight meetings.

    (3) Cleveland Cavaliers vs. (6) Chicago Bulls: Bulls win series 3–2

  • Game 1 @ The Coliseum, Richfield (April 28): Chicago 95, Cleveland 88
  • Game 2 @ The Coliseum, Richfield (April 30): Cleveland 96, Chicago 88
  • Game 3 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 3): Chicago 101, Cleveland 94
  • Game 4 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 5): Cleveland 108, Chicago 105
  • Game 5 @ The Coliseum, Richfield (May 7): Chicago 101, Cleveland 100 (Michael Jordan hits the series-winning shot at the buzzer)
  • This was the second playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Bulls winning the first meeting.

    (4) Atlanta Hawks vs. (5) Milwaukee Bucks: Bucks win series 3–2

  • Game 1 @ The Omni, Atlanta (April 27): Atlanta 100, Milwaukee 92
  • Game 2 @ The Omni, Atlanta (April 29): Milwaukee 108, Atlanta 98
  • Game 3 @ Bradley Center, Milwaukee (May 2): Milwaukee 117, Atlanta 113
  • Game 4 @ Bradley Center, Milwaukee (May 5): Atlanta 113, Milwaukee 106
  • Game 5 @ The Omni, Atlanta (May 7): Milwaukee 96, Atlanta 92
  • This was the third playoff meeting between these two teams, with each team winning one series apiece.

    Conference Semifinals

    (1) Detroit Pistons vs. (5) Milwaukee Bucks: Pistons win series 4–0

  • Game 1 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 10): Detroit 85, Milwaukee 80
  • Game 2 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 12): Detroit 112, Milwaukee 92
  • Game 3 @ Bradley Center, Milwaukee (May 14): Detroit 110, Milwaukee 90
  • Game 4 @ Bradley Center, Milwaukee (May 15): Detroit 96, Milwaukee 94
  • This was the second playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Pistons winning the first meeting.

    (2) New York Knicks vs. (6) Chicago Bulls: Bulls win series 4–2

  • Game 1 @ Madison Square Garden, New York City (May 9): Chicago 120, New York 109
  • Game 2 @ Madison Square Garden, New York City (May 11): New York 114, Chicago 97
  • Game 3 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 13): Chicago 111, New York 88
  • Game 4 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 14): Chicago 106, New York 93
  • Game 5 @ Madison Square Garden, New York City (May 16): New York 121, Chicago 114
  • Game 6 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 19): Chicago 113, New York 111 (Michael Jordan hits the series-winning free throws with 4 seconds left)
  • This was the second playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Bulls winning the first meeting.

    Conference Finals

    (1) Detroit Pistons vs. (6) Chicago Bulls: Pistons win series 4–2

  • Game 1 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 21): Chicago 94, Detroit 88
  • Game 2 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 23): Detroit 100, Chicago 91
  • Game 3 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 27): Chicago 99, Detroit 97 (Michael Jordan hits the game-winner with 3 seconds left)
  • Game 4 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 29): Detroit 86, Chicago 80
  • Game 5 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 31): Detroit 94, Chicago 85
  • Game 6 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (June 2): Detroit 103, Chicago 94
  • This was the third playoff meeting between these two teams, with each team winning one series apiece.

    NBA Finals

    (1) Detroit Pistons vs. (1) Los Angeles Lakers: Pistons win series 4–0

  • Game 1 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (June 6): Detroit 109, Los Angeles 97
  • Game 2 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (June 8): Detroit 108, Los Angeles 105
  • Game 3 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (June 11): Detroit 114, Los Angeles 110 (Joe Dumars blocks David Rivers' potential game-tying 3 with 8 seconds left)
  • Game 4 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (June 13): Detroit 105, Los Angeles 97 (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's final NBA game)
  • This was the 11th playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Lakers winning nine of the first ten meetings.

    References

    1989 NBA Playoffs Wikipedia


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