Girish Mahajan

1991 NBA Playoffs

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Season  1990–91
Teams  16
1991 NBA Playoffs
Champions  Chicago Bulls (1st title)
Runner-up  Los Angeles Lakers (24th finals appearance)
Semifinalists  Detroit Pistons Portland Trail Blazers

The 1991 NBA Playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 1990–91 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Conference champion Chicago Bulls defeating the Western Conference champion Los Angeles Lakers 4 games to 1 in the NBA Finals. Michael Jordan was named NBA Finals MVP.

Contents

After the Pistons had ended their season the last three years, the Bulls got revenge in the Eastern Conference Finals by sweeping the two-time defending NBA champions. It was the first time the Bulls won a playoff series over the Pistons since 1974, when both teams were still part of the Western Conference. Game 4 ended with some of the Pistons walking off the court before time expired, refusing to shake the Bulls' hands. In the 1989 NBA Finals, the Pistons themselves had swept the two-time defending champion Lakers. Detroit did not reach the conference finals again until 2003.

The seventh seeded Golden State Warriors stunned the San Antonio Spurs in the first round of the playoffs, defeating them 3 games to 1. It would be Golden State's last playoff series win until 2007.

The 76ers and the Bucks met in the first round of the playoffs where the 76ers swept the series. It would be both teams last playoff appearance until 1999.

Game 4 of the Blazers–Jazz series was the last game ever played at the Salt Palace.

This was the first year that NBC aired the NBA Playoffs.

Western Conference

Champion: Los Angeles Lakers

1st Round

(1) Portland Trail Blazers vs. (8) Seattle SuperSonics: Blazers win series 3-2

  • Game 1 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (April 26): Portland 110, Seattle 102
  • Game 2 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (April 28): Portland 115, Seattle 106
  • Game 3 @ Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle (April 30): Seattle 102, Portland 99
  • Game 4 @ Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle (May 2): Seattle 101, Portland 89
  • Game 5 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 4): Portland 119, Seattle 107
  • This was the fourth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the SuperSonics winning two of the first three meetings.

    (2) San Antonio Spurs vs. (7) Golden State Warriors: Warriors win series 3-1

  • Game 1 @ HemisFair Arena, San Antonio (April 25): San Antonio 130, Golden State 121
  • Game 2 @ HemisFair Arena, San Antonio (April 27): Golden State 111, San Antonio 98
  • Game 3 @ Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena, Oakland (May 1): Golden State 109, San Antonio 106
  • Game 4 @ Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena, Oakland (May 3): Golden State 110, San Antonio 97
  • This was the first playoff meeting between the Warriors and the Spurs.

    (3) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (6) Houston Rockets: Lakers win series 3-0

  • Game 1 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (April 25): Los Angeles 94, Houston 92
  • Game 2 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (April 27): Los Angeles 109, Houston 98
  • Game 3 @ The Summit, Houston (April 30): Los Angeles 94, Houston 90 (Byron Scott hits the game-winner with 15 seconds left)
  • This was the fourth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Rockets winning two of the first three meetings.

    (4) Phoenix Suns vs. (5) Utah Jazz: Jazz win series 3-1

  • Game 1 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (April 25): Utah 129, Phoenix 90
  • Game 2 @ Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix (April 27): Phoenix 102, Utah 92
  • Game 3 @ Salt Palace, Salt Lake City (April 30): Utah 107, Phoenix 98
  • Game 4 @ Salt Palace, Salt Lake City (May 2): Utah 101, Phoenix 93
  • This was the third playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Suns winning the first two meetings.

    Conference Semifinals

    (1) Portland Trail Blazers vs. (5) Utah Jazz: Blazers win series 4-1

  • Game 1 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 7): Portland 117, Utah 97
  • Game 2 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 9): Portland 118, Utah 116
  • Game 3 @ Salt Palace, Salt Lake City (May 11): Utah 107, Portland 101
  • Game 4 @ Salt Palace, Salt Lake City (May 12): Portland 104, Utah 101
  • Game 5 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 14): Portland 103, Utah 96
  • This was the second playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Jazz winning the first meeting.

    (3) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (7) Golden State Warriors: Lakers win series 4-1

  • Game 1 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 5): Los Angeles 126, Golden State 116
  • Game 2 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 8): Golden State 125, Los Angeles 124
  • Game 3 @ Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena, Oakland (May 10): Los Angeles 115, Golden State 112
  • Game 4 @ Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena, Oakland (May 12): Los Angeles 123, Golden State 107
  • Game 5 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 14): Los Angeles 124, Golden State 119 (OT)
  • This was the seventh playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Lakers winning five of the first six meetings.

    Conference Finals

    (1) Portland Trail Blazers vs. (3) Los Angeles Lakers: Lakers win series 4-2

  • Game 1 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 18): Los Angeles 111, Portland 106
  • Game 2 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 21): Portland 109, Los Angeles 98
  • Game 3 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 24): Los Angeles 106, Portland 92
  • Game 4 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 26): Los Angeles 116, Portland 95
  • Game 5 @ Memorial Coliseum, Portland (May 28): Portland 95, Los Angeles 84
  • Game 6 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (May 30): Los Angeles 91, Portland 90
  • This was the fifth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Lakers winning three of the first four meetings.

    Eastern Conference

    Champion: Chicago Bulls

    1st Round

    (1) Chicago Bulls vs. (8) New York Knicks: Bulls win series 3-0

  • Game 1 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (April 25): Chicago 126, New York 85
  • Game 2 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (April 28): Chicago 89, New York 79
  • Game 3 @ Madison Square Garden, New York City (April 30): Chicago 103, New York 94 (Michael Jordan's famous dunk on Patrick Ewing)
  • This was the third playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Bulls winning the first two meetings.

    (2) Boston Celtics vs. (7) Indiana Pacers: Celtics win series 3-2

  • Game 1 @ Boston Garden, Boston (April 26): Boston 127, Indiana 120
  • Game 2 @ Boston Garden, Boston (April 28): Indiana 130, Boston 118
  • Game 3 @ Market Square Arena, Indianapolis (May 1): Boston 112, Indiana 105
  • Game 4 @ Market Square Arena, Indianapolis (May 3): Indiana 116, Boston 113
  • Game 5 @ Boston Garden, Boston (May 5): Boston 124, Indiana 121 (Larry Bird came back in the middle of the third quarter despite suffering a concussion in the second and inspired the Celtics' rally.)
  • This was the first playoff meeting between the Celtics and the Pacers.

    (3) Detroit Pistons vs. (6) Atlanta Hawks: Pistons win series 3-2

  • Game 1 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (April 26): Atlanta 103, Detroit 98
  • Game 2 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (April 28): Detroit 101, Atlanta 88
  • Game 3 @ The Omni, Atlanta (April 30): Detroit 103, Atlanta 91
  • Game 4 @ The Omni, Atlanta (May 2): Atlanta 123, Detroit 111
  • Game 5 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 5): Detroit 113, Atlanta 81
  • This was the sixth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Hawks winning three of the first five meetings.

    (4) Milwaukee Bucks vs. (5) Philadelphia 76ers: 76ers win series 3-0

  • Game 1 @ Bradley Center, Milwaukee (April 25): Philadelphia 99, Milwaukee 90
  • Game 2 @ Bradley Center, Milwaukee (April 27): Philadelphia 116, Milwaukee 112 (OT)
  • Game 3 @ The Spectrum, Philadelphia (April 30): Philadelphia 121, Milwaukee 100
  • This was the eighth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the 76ers winning four of the first seven meetings.

    Conference Semifinals

    (1) Chicago Bulls vs. (5) Philadelphia 76ers: Bulls win series 4-1

  • Game 1 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 4): Chicago 105, Philadelphia 92
  • Game 2 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 6): Chicago 112, Philadelphia 100
  • Game 3 @ The Spectrum, Philadelphia (May 10): Philadelphia 99, Chicago 97
  • Game 4 @ The Spectrum, Philadelphia (May 12): Chicago 101, Philadelphia 85
  • Game 5 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 14): Chicago 100, Philadelphia 95
  • This was the second playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Bulls winning the first meeting.

    (2) Boston Celtics vs. (3) Detroit Pistons: Pistons win series 4-2

  • Game 1 @ Boston Garden, Boston (May 7): Detroit 86, Boston 75
  • Game 2 @ Boston Garden, Boston (May 9): Boston 109, Detroit 103
  • Game 3 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 11): Boston 115, Detroit 83
  • Game 4 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 13): Detroit 104, Boston 97
  • Game 5 @ Boston Garden, Boston (May 15): Detroit 116, Boston 111
  • Game 6 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 17): Detroit 117, Boston 113 (OT)
  • This was the sixth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Celtics winning three of the first five meetings.

    Conference Finals

    (1) Chicago Bulls vs. (3) Detroit Pistons: Bulls win series 4-0

  • Game 1 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 19): Chicago 94, Detroit 83
  • Game 2 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (May 21): Chicago 105, Detroit 97
  • Game 3 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 25): Chicago 113, Detroit 107
  • Game 4 @ The Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills (May 27): Chicago 115, Detroit 94
  • This was the fifth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Pistons winning three of the first four meetings.

    NBA Finals

    (1) Chicago Bulls vs. (3) Los Angeles Lakers: Bulls win series 4-1

  • Game 1 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (June 2): Los Angeles 93, Chicago 91 (Sam Perkins hits the game-winning 3 with 14 seconds left)
  • Game 2 @ Chicago Stadium, Chicago (June 5): Chicago 107, Los Angeles 86 (MJ does "The Move")
  • Game 3 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (June 7): Chicago 104, Los Angeles 96 (OT) (MJ hits the game-tying shot with 3.4 seconds left to force OT)
  • Game 4 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (June 9): Chicago 97, Los Angeles 82
  • Game 5 @ Great Western Forum, Los Angeles (June 12): Chicago 108, Los Angeles 101
  • This was the fifth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Lakers winning the first four meetings.

    References

    1991 NBA Playoffs Wikipedia


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