Larry Hughes

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Posted by kaori 03/08/2009 @ 20:13

Tags : larry hughes, basketball players, basketball, sports

News headlines
Twenty years later, Ferry is finally paying off for Cavs - NBA.com
Ferry's first priority that initial summer with the Cavs was re-signing Ilgauskas, and he used the cap space to sign Larry Hughes (after trying for Michael Redd), Damon Jones and Donyell Marshall. All of the above helped the Cavs win 50 games in each...
Baseball: Carroll downs Colleyville Heritage, 3-1, in opener - Star Community Newspapers
“We played a good game,” said Carroll coach Larry Hughes. “We got good pitching.” Carroll starter Thomas Altimont worked six innings, allowing three hits and striking out nine. Josh Rake had a triple in the win. Carroll scored twice in the first inning...
Baseball: Dragons face Colleyville Heritage in opening round of ... - McKinney Courier Gazette
When asked whether the time off without playing games will affect his squad, Carroll coach Larry Hughes was succinct with his answer. The opening game of the series will be at 4:30 pm today at Carroll. Friday's game will take place at 4:30 pm at...
Roundtable: What Do the Wizards Do If They Pick 5th? - Washington Post
At the time, the Wizards were coming off a 25-57 season in which Gilbert Arenas and Larry Hughes missed significant time because of injury and Eddie Jordan completed his first season as head coach of his hometown team. Ernie Grunfeld's dilemma back...
Can Caron play SG next season? - Bullets Forever
Historically, Gil has thrived alongside combo guards like Larry Hughes. I'm hoping the team can make Antawn a sixth man, keep Caron at SF and upgrade at SG. Anyone think Nick Young can make the leap and be a starter at SG next season? Yo!...
T-Mac to New York gaining steam - Buckets Over Broadway
McGrady is looking to get his career back on track and really would only require perhaps Larry Hughes and maybe Jared Jefferies (I can dream right?). I am all in favor of getting rid of the overrated Hughes who never really fit in this system with his...
More 'best man' than 'second fiddle' - The Plain Dealer - cleveland.com
Williams says he didn't talk with LeBron James about what didn't work between the Cavaliers' superstar and Larry Hughes. Williams and James were too busy forging a friendship to worry about the past. Style of play was an issue for Hughes....
How to Prepare For a Layoff - U.S. News & World Report
Larry Hughes lost his job in February. His was just one of the 651000 positions wiped from the payrolls that month. It's a little strange experiencing personal tragedy en masse: your paycheck, livelihood, and nameplate eliminated along with a group...
Troops Mobilize in War Games, May 16, 1939 - Los Angeles Times
The reporter's badge belonged to Sid Hughes (1908-1958), legendary reporter who worked at nearly every newspaper in Los Angeles. Keith Thursby. Keith has been an editor at The Times in news, sports and design since 1986. The Rams moved to St. Louis on...
Malone's fancy turns to tax-free spinoffs - The Daily Deal (subscription)
s Hughes Electronics Corp. since its founding in the early 1990s to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. and subsequently to Malone. DirecTV's in-house team included general counsel Larry Hunter and associate general counsel Keith Landenberger....

Larry Hughes

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Larry Hughes (born January 23, 1979 in St. Louis, Missouri) is an American professional basketball player who currently plays shooting guard for the National Basketball Association's New York Knicks. He is a 6'5" (1.96 m) 185 lb (88 kg) guard.

Hughes started his basketball career at Christian Brothers College High School, winning the Missouri state championship with his team in 1997.

Hughes played 1 season of college basketball at Saint Louis University. He finished the 1997-98 season with per game averages of 20.9 points, 5.1 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 2.16 steals. He led the Billikens to the NCAA Tournament that year, making it to the second round after a win over University of Massachusetts.

Hughes has previously played for the Philadelphia 76ers, Golden State Warriors, Washington Wizards, Cleveland Cavaliers, Chicago Bulls, and was drafted by Philadelphia in the 1st round of the 1998 NBA Draft out of Saint Louis University, where he was named Freshman of the Year. He is known for being a versatile guard with strong defensive abilities, and was selected to the 2004-05 NBA All-Defensive 1st Team as a member of the Wizards. He led the league in steals per game with 2.89 in 2004-05.

Larry participated in the 2000 Slam Dunk Contest in Oracle Arena (home of the Golden State Warriors) in Oakland, California. He is notable for not completing a dunk in the time limit.

Hughes signed a five-year 70 million dollar contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers as a free agent in the summer of 2005. He was brought into Cleveland to provide assistance to young superstar LeBron James, the Cavs' first overall draft pick in 2003. In the 2005-06 season he helped Lebron and the Cavs to an 18-10 record before requiring surgery on his broken finger. His last performance before the injury came in a 97-84 home upset of the Detroit Pistons, in which he scored 16 points on 7-10 shooting to go with two steals, five rebounds and three assists.

The 6'5" 185 pound guard features an average game that includes, on special occasion, spurts of offense and defensive prowess. Prior to injuries in 2005, he averaged 16.2 points, and 37.6 minutes per game. Both of those statistics were the second best on the team, to Lebron James. He has an ongoing rivalry with former backcourt partner Gilbert Arenas, with whom he played with for three seasons, two in Washington and one in Golden State.

On May 2, 2006 Hughes was recipient of the inaugural Austin Carr Good Guy Award, designed to recognize the Cavaliers player who is cooperative and understanding of the media, the community and the public.

On February 21, 2008, Hughes was traded to the Chicago Bulls, in a three-team trade, along with Drew Gooden, Cedric Simmons and Shannon Brown in exchange for Ben Wallace and Joe Smith.

On February 19, 2009 just before the trade deadline, Hughes was traded from the Bulls to the New York Knicks for Tim Thomas, Jerome James, and Anthony Roberson.

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Gilbert Arenas

Gilbert Jay Arenas Jr. (born January 6, 1982, in Tampa, Florida) is an American professional basketball player in the NBA. He currently plays for the Washington Wizards.

Though born in Florida, Gilbert moved to California with his father at a young age, and became one of the best young basketball players to ever come out of Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley. He attended Grant High School in North Hollywood, and accepted a scholarship offer to the University of Arizona late in his junior year.From the time of his entry into the league, Arenas's popularity soared. He transformed himself from being a relative unknown to being voted by fans as an All-Star starter for the Eastern Conference in 2007. Arenas overcame a 213,000 vote deficit at one point to edge out Vince Carter by just over 3,000 votes for the second of the two starting guard spots, the other spot going to Dwyane Wade. Arenas was most often nicknamed "Agent Zero," but has increasingly been referred to as "Hibachi," a nod to the small Japanese heating device, which literally translates to "bowl of fire." Both names have quickly become fan favorites in the Washington area.

When Arenas entered the 2001 NBA Draft out of the University of Arizona, he did not seem one of the best prospects. In high school, he was told he would never make it, so he took that on as a challenge and took the jersey number zero. Teams in the first round passed on Arenas because he lacked the size needed at the shooting guard position in the NBA and lacked the awareness and ball handling skills of a point guard. His dream was to be drafted by the New York Knicks, who had two picks in the first round. They had shown interest in him but they passed. With no position solidified and a shaky prospect at best, Arenas went the entire first round without being drafted.

The Golden State Warriors finally drafted him with the second pick in the second round (31st overall). Although the Warriors did not enjoy much team success during his tenure with them, Arenas quickly established himself as one of the league's bright young talents. In 2003, his second year in the league, Arenas received the NBA Most Improved Player Award and was named Most Valuable Player of the Rookie-Sophomore game during the NBA All-Star Weekend.

After that season, he was one of the most sought-after free agents of the NBA. He signed with the Washington Wizards, reportedly after flipping a coin to decide among several teams, including the Wizards, Warriors, and Los Angeles Clippers. Arenas had a disappointing first season with the Wizards, battling a strained abdominal muscle injury all season. However, Arenas enjoyed great success in his second season in Washington. He teamed up with shooting guard Larry Hughes (22.0 points per game) in 2004-05 to give the Wizards the highest scoring backcourt duo in the NBA. Arenas was selected for his first NBA All-Star Game. He guided the team to a 45-win season and its first playoff berth since 1997. Arenas led the team in scoring with 25.5 ppg, and finished seventh in the league in that category. He also finished sixth in the league in steals per game in 2004-05 with 2.24 (Hughes led the league with 2.93 steals per game).

Known for his fierce competitiveness and somewhat unusual behavior, Arenas quickly became a fan favorite in Washington. In the fifth game of the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs in 2005, Arenas hit a 16-foot fadeaway as time expired to give the Wizards a 112-110 win over the Chicago Bulls. The Wizards eventually won the series, the franchise's first playoff series victory in more than a decade.

Arenas had a career year during the 2005-06 season in which he averaged 29.3 points, which ranked fourth among the scoring leaders, two steals (also fourth), and 6.1 assists per game. Despite his accomplishments, neither fans nor coaches selected Arenas to the 2006 All-Star Game. He was able to get in due to the injury to Indiana Pacers forward–center Jermaine O'Neal. He also participated in the Three-point Shootout, where he was the runner-up to Dirk Nowitzki in the contest.

During the offseason, Arenas said that he was willing to take a pay cut in order to give the Wizards additional money with which to sign available free agents. He has expressed a desire to win a championship with the Wizards. One of Arenas's most memorable play is a 40-foot jump shot against the Cleveland Cavaliers in Round 1 of the 2006 NBA playoffs.

During the 2006-07 NBA season, Arenas established himself as a threat in close game situations. On January 3, 2007, Arenas hit a 32-foot buzzer-beater to win the game against the Milwaukee Bucks, 108-105. Two weeks later on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day he hit yet another buzzer-beating three-pointer to beat the Utah Jazz, 114-111, in a thriller at the Verizon Center. This same scenario has been added as a cut scene in the video game NBA Live 2008. He also hit a game-winning layup as time expired to beat the Seattle SuperSonics on March 21, 2007.

In an overtime game versus the Los Angeles Lakers on December 17, 2006 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, Arenas scored a career-high 60 points, adding 8 rebounds and 8 assists in helping lead the Wizards over the Lakers 147-141. Arenas now holds the Wizards' franchise record for most points scored in a game by an individual. The previous record was held by Earl Monroe with 56 points, achieved in 1968 which was also an overtime game against the Lakers. Arenas's 16 points in the extra period also set an NBA record for most points in one overtime period, surpassing Earl Boykins' record by one point.

Gilbert became noted during the season for his anger with his snub by Team USA for the 2006 FIBA World Championship. Team USA Managing Director Jerry Colangelo and assistant coach Mike D'Antoni cited Arenas's injury as the reason for his not making the team.

Arenas himself has noted that he withdrew from the United States national team for the 2006 FIBA World Championship because he felt that assistant coaches Mike D'Antoni and Nate McMillan had pre-determined the roster even prior to tryouts. Afterward, he stated that he planned on averaging 50 points against their respective teams (Phoenix Suns and Portland Trail Blazers). He succeeded at his goal versus powerhouse Phoenix, scoring 54 points, including 21-of-37 from the field, 6-of-12 three-pointers (while reportedly eyeing in the direction of Suns chairman Jerry Colangelo), in a high-scoring 144-139 Wizards win over the Suns. However, on February 11 versus the Blazers, he was held to a lowly nine points, including tying the Wizards' franchise record for three-point futility, going 0-for-8 from behind the arc, in a 94-73 loss versus Portland.

In February, 2007, during the final days of All-Star voting, Arenas was voted as a first-time starter for the 2007 NBA All-Star game for the Eastern Conference, edging out Vince Carter by a slight margin, with 1,454,166 votes to Carter's 1,451,156. At the time he was averaging 29.7 points per game, second in the league.

Towards the end of the season Arenas tore his MCL during a game against the Charlotte Bobcats when Gerald Wallace fell into his leg. The Wizards struggled to finish the season with Arenas and teammate Caron Butler both being injured. Washington earned a playoff berth, but was swept in the first round in a rematch with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Arenas had only played in 8 games this season due to a knee injury, before he started practicing again in May, and returned to action on April 2, 2008 against the Milwaukee Bucks, scoring 17 points in a 110-109 home loss.

Ten days prior, Arenas stormed out of the locker room before a game against the Detroit Pistons. He had wanted to play, but his doctor did not give him clearance. Arenas made a surprise return on April 9, when he came out of the locker room with 5:30 left in the first quarter. He finished the game scoring 13 points and dishing out 3 assists in helping the Wizards beat the Boston Celtics 109-95. He came off the bench for the rest of the regular season as not to disrupt the chemistry the Wizards had built without him. Arenas got his wish when they matched up against the Cavaliers for the third straight year; however, it was apparent he was not 100% healthy. In games 1-3, he played limited minutes, citing soreness in his surgically repaired knee. A few minutes before game 4 of their first-round playoff appearance against the Cavaliers, Arenas announced he would sit out the rest of the playoffs.

On June 9, 2008, Arenas officially opted out of the final year of his contract. Arenas also stated that he would consider re-signing with the Wizards if they were able to retain fellow free agent and teammate Antawn Jamison. The Wizards did indeed sign Jamison to a contract. Arenas was offered a five-year contract worth more than $100 million by the Golden State Warriors and another max deal by the Wizards, a six-year deal worth $124 million. On July 13, 2008, Arenas signed a contract worth $111 million over six years with the Wizards.

However, he has yet to start a NBA game in the 2008-2009 season, and many fans are wondering if he is in "injured" of in fact, dead.

In the Washington, D.C. area, "Gilbertology" is the name given to Arenas's unorthodox behavior on and off the court, first coined by former Wizards head coach Eddie Jordan. After being criticized for shooting too much as a point guard, Arenas would play games nearly without shooting at all, and then score at will the next game.

While with the Warriors, he once took a shower at halftime in full uniform. Before every game he would take a teammate's jersey and hide it in the locker room to make him look for it. Warriors teammate Adonal Foyle called him a "lunatic," and Troy Murphy said he used to lick or put baby powder on donuts he was forced to deliver to the team as a prank.

Arenas has been said to play online poker during the halftime of games, instead of resting or preparing for the second half. He disputes the accuracy of these stories, saying he was misquoted. Arenas says he does not play for money nor does he play online; instead, he plays on a DVD game of poker. On road trips, he will often eschew team outings on the town in favor of sitting in his room, ordering products from infomercials, such as a colon cleanser. In the same interview he said he preferred sleeping on the couch rather than on his bed, and that he once ate 12 cheeseburgers while on a road trip with the Wizards in Canada.

At the end of each game, regardless of whether it is a home/road win or loss, Arenas takes off his jersey and tosses it to the crowd. He originally tossed his shoes into the crowd, explaining that jerseys were too expensive for him to pay for every game. After he signed a lucrative contract with Washington, he began to throw his jerseys out. Arenas agreed to become a team captain for the 2005-06 season after declining the previous year because he said that many times he didn't even believe the things he was saying to his teammates. He has recently been given the nickname "The Black President", and calls himself the "East Coast Assassin", in reference to his quest to prove his abilities to those who did not vote for him to be a 2006 Eastern All Star reserve. Arenas has also begun to refer to himself as "Agent Zero", a reference to his jersey number originally coined by sports blog The Wizznutzz.

During the 2003-04 season, Arenas tried to vote himself into the All-Star game, trading a pair of shoes and a jersey for a box of ballots.

In October 2006, an ESPN.com story stated that Arenas was converting his Washington, D.C. home to simulate high-altitude conditions, stating that he hoped the arrangement would help him have more energy, especially late in games.

Arenas does not wear size 13 sneakers on the court even though his feet are size 14½, as popularly believed. This was a misquote from an interview. He actually wears shoes a half-size larger.

During the 2006 NBA season, he began to shout the word "hibachi" as he took field goal attempts in games, explaining, "You know, a hibachi grill gets real hot. That's what my shot's like, so I've been calling it that: 'Welcome to the hibachi'." He has also stated that while he is scoring on opponents, he is "cooking chicken and shrimp" in reference to his "Hibachi grill," and that if his opponent wanted to double-team him, he would "cook fillet mignon" as well.

On December 23, 2006, Arenas told The Washington Post he had begun replacing "hibachi" with the phrase "quality shots," a direct reference to Kobe Bryant who had felt Arenas' shot selection was questionable and that he seemingly lacked a conscience. "Out of that whole game I probably took two bad shots," Arenas would respond. "And for me not to have a conscience? You're right. When you're an assassin, you don't have a conscience." Nonetheless, Kobe stated that Gilbert Arenas is one of the most difficult players to guard in the NBA.

According to Gilbert Arenas's blog, he predicted that he would hit the game winner against the Utah Jazz on January 15, 2007.

On January 23, 2007, when asked about Gilbert's remarks about predicting his next game against Portland, Phoenix coach Mike D'Antoni jokingly said, "I can't wait to see what he does against Duke. He's gonna kill Duke." Gilbert then responded by saying that given their soft rims, he'd probably score 84 or 85 points at Duke, and that he'd be willing to give up playing an entire NBA season to play against them. He added, "I wouldn't pass the ball. I wouldn't even think about passing it. It would be like NBA Live or an NBA 2K7 game, you just shoot with one person.".

On February 18, 2007 during the All-Star game, Gilbert joined a line of dunking Elvis impersonators and completed a between-the legs dunk. According to his NBA.com blog, Shaquille O'Neal promised him $100,000 to his Zer0 2 Her0 charity if he did it.

According to his blog, Arenas has said that although he was going to try to go an entire season without making one of his famous predictions, he promised the fans of the new and improved Boston Celtics that they would lose their season opener against the Wizards Boston went on to win that game. But the Wizards won the season series 3-1.

Arenas was raised by his single father in Florida and California after his mother, a drug addict, left him as a child. His paternal grandfather is originally from Cuba. He also has two children. His cousin is Javier Arenas, an all-star football player who is currently starting for the University of Alabama. Another cousin, Armando Murillo, is a cornerback at the University of Nebraska. Arenas attended Sherman Oaks elementary in Sherman Oaks, California and Grant High School in North Hollywood, California.

Arenas donated $100 for every point he scored in each home game during the 2006-07 season to local D.C. area schools, while Wizards team owner Abe Pollin is matching that contribution for each away game. He also mentors a D.C. boy who lost his family in a fire at age 10. Arenas takes him shopping, bowling, got him a job as a ball boy for the Wizards, and acts as a brotherly figure towards him.

Arenas also has his own shoe, the Adidas Gil Zero, as well as his own line of Adidas TS Lightswitch shoes.

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New York Knicks

New York Knicks logo

The New York Knickerbockers are a professional basketball team based in New York City. The team plays in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

According to Forbes Magazine, the Knicks are the most valuable basketball franchise in the United States, valued at approximately $608 million.

At one point, the Knicks were owned by Gulf+Western, which was renamed to Paramount Communications in 1989, and sold to Viacom in 1994. Viacom then sold the team to ITT Corporation and Cablevision, and in 1997, ITT sold their share of the team to Cablevision, who still owns the team today.

The Knicks, the shortened form of Knickerbockers, are one of only two teams of the original National Basketball Association still located in its original city (the other being the Boston Celtics). The Basketball Association of America and the National Basketball League merged in 1949 to form the National Basketball Association.

The Knicks' (and the BAA's) first game was played on November 1, 1946 against the Toronto Huskies as the New York Knickerbockers at Toronto's Maple Leaf Gardens, where the Knickerbockers won 68-66. The Knickerbockers' first head coach was Neil Cohalan. The Knickerbockers were consistent playoff contenders in their early years. During the first decade of the NBA's existence, the Knickerbockers made the NBA Finals in three straight years (1951–53), and they were respected by basketball players and fans. For the remainder of the 1950s, the Knicks would field decent, if not spectacular teams, and made the playoffs in 1955, 1956 (where they lost a one-game playoff to the Syracuse Nationals), and 1959.

From 1960 to 1966, the Knicks fell on hard times, and they finished last in the NBA's Eastern Division each year. Some of the biggest losses in Knicks history occurred during this time. One such game occurred on November 15, 1960, where they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers by a score of 162-100. Another notable loss occurred on March 3, 1962, as the Philadelphia Warriors' Wilt Chamberlain scored a NBA-record 100 points against the Knicks, and the Warriors won the game 169-147 in a game played in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

During the Knicks' slide into futility, there were signs of better things to come. In 1964, the Knicks drafted Willis Reed, who went on to become 1965's NBA Rookie of the Year. In 1965, the Knicks were given an extra first-round draft pick by the NBA (as were the San Francisco Warriors, who owned the worst record in the league's Western Division in 1964-65) and took advantage by drafting Bill Bradley and Dave Stallworth.

In 1967, right after the Knicks made it to the playoffs for the first time since 1959, the Knicks hired Red Holzman as their head coach. With Holzman at the helm, and young players such as Bill Bradley and Walt "Clyde" Frazier, the Knicks were a playoff team again in 1968. The next season, the team acquired Dave DeBusschere from the Detroit Pistons, and the team went 55–27. In the ensuing playoffs, the team made it past the first round of the playoffs for the first time since 1953, sweeping the Baltimore Bullets in three games, before falling to the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Division finals.

In the 1969–70 season, the Knicks had a then-NBA record 18 straight victories en route to 60-22 record, which was the best regular season record in the team's history. After defeating the Bullets in the Eastern Division semifinals and the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Division finals, the Knicks faced the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Finals.

With the series tied at 2–2, the Knicks would be tested in Game 5. Reed tore a muscle in his right leg in the first quarter, and was lost for the rest of the game. Despite his absence, New York would go on to win the game, rallying from a 16–point deficit. Without their injured captain the Knicks would lose Game 6, setting up one of the most famous moments in NBA history. Reed limped onto the court before the 7th game, determined to play through his pain. He scored New York's first two baskets before going scoreless for the remainder of the contest. Although he was not at full strength, Reed's heroics inspired the Knicks, and they won the game by a score of 113-99, giving them their first championship. The entire starting line up for the 69-70 Knicks had their jerseys retired by the New York Knicks. The jerseys of Walt Frazier (#10), Willis Reed (#19), Dave DeBusschere (#22), Bill Bradley (#24), and Dick Barnett (#12) all hang from the rafters at Madison Square Garden. Reed's walking on to the court was voted the greatest moment in Madison Square Garden history.

The Knicks' success continued for the next few years. After losing to the Bullets in the 1971 Eastern Conference finals, the team, aided by the acquisitions of Jerry Lucas and Earl "The Pearl" Monroe, returned to the Finals in 1972. This time the Knicks fell to the Lakers in five games. The next year, the results were reversed, as the Knicks defeated the Lakers in five games to win their second NBA title in four years. The team had one more impressive season in 1973–74, as they reached the Eastern Conference finals, where they fell in five games to the Celtics. It was after this season that Reed announced his retirement, and the team's fortunes took a turn for the worse.

In the 1974–75 season, the Knicks posted a 40–42 record, their first losing record in eight seasons. However, the record still qualified them for a playoff spot, though the Knicks lost to the Houston Rockets in the first round. After two more seasons with losing records, Holzman was replaced behind the bench by Reed. In Reed's first year coaching the team, they posted a 43–39 record and made it to the Eastern Conference semifinals, where they were swept by the Philadelphia 76ers. The next season, after the team got off to a 6–8 start, Holzman was rehired as the team's coach. The team did not fare any better that season, finishing with a 31–51 record, their worst in thirteen years.

After improving to a 39–43 record in the 1979–80 season, the Knicks posted a 50–32 record in the 1980–81 season. In the ensuing playoffs, the Chicago Bulls swept them in two games. Holzman retired the following season as one of the winningest coaches in NBA history. The team's record for that year was a dismal 33–49. However, Holzman's legacy would continue through the players he influenced. One of the Knicks' bench players and defensive specialists during the 1970s was Phil "Action" Jackson. Jackson went on to coach the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers to nine NBA championships, tied with Red Auerbach for the most in NBA history. Jackson has cited Red Holzman as the best coach he ever played for and a major influence on his coaching philosophy.

Hubie Brown replaced Holzman as coach of the Knicks, and in his first season, the team went 44–38 and make it to the second round of the playoffs, where they were swept by the eventual champion Philadelphia 76ers. The next season, the team, aided by new acquisition Bernard King, improved to a 47–35 record and returned to the playoffs. The team beat the Detroit Pistons in the first round with an overtime win in the fifth and deciding game, before losing in second round once again, this time in seven games to the Celtics. The team's fortunes again turned for the worse the next season, as they lost their last twelve games to finish with a 24–58 record. The first of these losses occurred on March 23, 1985, where King injured his knee and spent the next 24 months in rehabilitation. Some figured that his career would end from this injury, but he proved them wrong and resumed his career near the end of the 1986–87 season.

As a result of the Knicks' dismal performance in the 1984–85 season, the team was entered into the first-ever NBA Draft Lottery. The team ended up winning the number one pick in that year's NBA Draft. They selected star center Patrick Ewing of Georgetown University.

In Ewing's first season with the Knicks, he led all rookies in scoring (20 points per game) and rebounds (9 rebounds per game), and he won the NBA Rookie of the Year Award. The team would not fare as well, though, as they posted a 23–59 record in his first season, and a 24–58 record in his second season.

The team's luck changed in the 1987–88 season with the hiring of Rick Pitino as head coach, and selection of point guard Mark Jackson in the draft. Combined with Ewing's consistently stellar play, the Knicks made the playoffs with a record of 38–44, where they lost to the Celtics in the first round. The team would do even better the next season as the team traded backup center Bill Cartwright for power forward Charles Oakley before the season started and then posted a 52–30 record, which was good enough for their first division title in nearly twenty years. In the playoffs, they defeated the 76ers in the first round before losing to the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.

Before the 1989–90 season began, a couple of major changes occurred. Pitino left the Knicks to coach the University of Kentucky's basketball team and Stu Jackson was named head coach. The Knicks went 45–37 and defeated the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs, winning the final three games after losing the first two. They went on to lose to the eventual NBA champion Detroit Pistons in the next round. In the 1990–91 season, the team, who hired John McLeod as head coach early that season, had a 39–43 record and were swept by the eventual NBA champion Bulls.

Sensing that the team needed a better coach in order to become a championship contender, new Knicks president Dave Checketts hired Pat Riley prior to the 1991–92 season. Riley, who coached the Lakers to four NBA titles during the 1980s, taught the Knicks hard, physical defense, and immediately gave them a boost. That season, the team, which now included fan favorite John Starks, posted a 51–31 record, good enough for a first place tie in the Atlantic Division. After defeating the Pistons in the first round of the playoffs, the team battled with the Bulls for seven games, before once again letting the Bulls get the best of them.

The 1992–93 season proved to be even more successful, as the Knicks won the Atlantic Division with a 60–22 record. Before the season, the Knicks traded Mark Jackson to the Los Angeles Clippers for Charles Smith, Doc Rivers, and Bo Kimble while also acquiring Rolando Blackman from the Dallas Mavericks. The team made it to the Eastern Conference finals, where once again they met the Bulls. After taking a two games-to-none lead, the Knicks lost the next four games.

After the Bulls' Michael Jordan made what would be his first retirement from basketball prior to the 1993–94 season, many saw this as an opportunity for the Knicks to finally make it to the NBA Finals. The team, who acquired Derek Harper in a midseason trade with the Dallas Mavericks, once again won the Atlantic Division with a 57–25 record. In the playoffs, the team played a then NBA-record 25 games (the Boston Celtics played 26 games in the 2008 playoffs); they started by defeating the New Jersey Nets in the first round before finally getting past the Bulls, defeating them in the second round in seven games. In the Eastern Conference Finals, they faced the Indiana Pacers, who at one point held a three games-to-two lead. They had this advantage thanks to the exploits of Reggie Miller, who scored 25 fourth quarter points in Game 5 to lead the Pacers to victory. However, the Knicks won the next two games to reach their first NBA Finals since 1973.

In the finals, the Knicks would play seven low-scoring, defensive games against the Houston Rockets. After splitting the first two games in Houston, the Knicks would win two out of three games at Madison Square Garden. In Game 6, however, a last-second attempt at a game-winning shot by Starks was tipped by Rockets center Hakeem Olajuwon, giving the Rockets an 86–84 victory and forcing a Game 7. The Knicks lost Game 7 90–84, credited in large part to Starks's dismal 2-for-18 shooting performance and Riley's stubborn refusal to bench Starks, despite having bench players who were renowned for their shooting prowess, such as Rolando Blackman and Hubert Davis available. However, during the finals, the Knicks got inspiration from Mark Messier captaining the New York Rangers to their first Stanley Cup in 54 years, with a 3-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

The next year, the Knicks were second place in the Atlantic Division with a 55–27 record. The team defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers before facing the Pacers again in the second round. The tone for the Knicks–Pacers series was set in Game 1, as Miller once again became a clutch nuisance to the Knicks by scoring eight points in the final 8 seconds of the game to give the Pacers a 107–105 victory. The series went to a Game 7, and when Patrick Ewing's last-second finger roll attempt to tie the game missed, the Pacers clinched the 97–95 win. Riley resigned the next day, and the Knicks hired Don Nelson as their new head coach.

During the 1995–96 season, Nelson was fired after 59 games, and, instead of going after another well-known coach, the Knicks hired longtime assistant Jeff Van Gundy, who had no prior experience as a head coach. The Knicks ended up with a 47–35 record that year, and swept the Cavaliers in the first round of the playoffs before losing to the eventual champion Bulls (who had an NBA record 72 wins in the regular season) in five games.

In the 1996–97 season, the Knicks, with the additions of such players as Larry Johnson and Allan Houston, registered a 57–25 record. In the playoffs, the Knicks swept the Charlotte Hornets in the first round before facing the Miami Heat (coached by Riley) in the second round. The Knicks took a 3–1 lead in the series before a brawl near the end of Game 5 resulted in suspensions of key players. Many of the suspended Knicks players, Ewing in particular, were disciplined not for participating in the altercation itself, but for violating an NBA rule stipulating that a benched player may not leave the bench during a fight (the rule was subsequently amended, making it illegal to leave the "bench area"). With Ewing and Houston suspended for Game 6, Johnson and Starks suspended for Game 7, and Charlie Ward suspended for both, the Knicks lost the series.

The 1997–98 season was marred by a wrist injury to Ewing on December 22, which forced him to miss the rest of the season and much of the playoffs. The team, which had a 43–39 record that season, still managed to defeat the Heat in the first round of the playoffs before having another meeting with the Pacers in the second round. Ewing returned in time for game two of the series. This time, the Pacers easily won the series in five games, as Reggie Miller once again broke the hearts of Knicks fans by hitting a tying three-pointer with 5.1 seconds remaining in Game 4, en route to a Pacers overtime victory. For the fourth straight year, the Knicks were eliminated in the second round of the playoffs.

Prior to the lockout-shortened 1998–99 season, the Knicks traded Starks in a package to the Golden State Warriors for 1994's 1st team all league shooting guard Latrell Sprewell (whose contract was voided by the Warriors after choking Warriors' head coach P. J. Carlesimo during the previous season), while also trading Charles Oakley for Marcus Camby. After barely getting into the playoffs with a 27–23 record, the Knicks started a Cinderella run. It started with the Knicks eliminating the #1 seeded Heat in the first round after Allan Houston bounced in a running one-hander off the front of the rim, high off the backboard, and in with 0.8 seconds left in the deciding 5th game. This remarkable upset marked only the second time in NBA history that an 8-seed had defeated the 1-seed in the NBA playoffs. After defeating the Atlanta Hawks in the second round four games to none, they faced the Pacers yet again in the Eastern Conference Finals. Despite losing Ewing to injury for the rest of the playoffs prior to Game 3, the Knicks won the series (aided in part to a four-point play by Larry Johnson in the final seconds of Game 3) to become the first eighth-seeded playoff team to make it to the NBA Finals. However, in the Finals, the San Antonio Spurs, with superstars David Robinson and Tim Duncan, proved too much for the injury-laden Knicks, who lost in five games. The remarkable fifth game of this Finals is remembered for its 2nd half scoring duel between the Spurs' Tim Duncan and the Knicks' Latrell Sprewell, and was decided by a long jumper by Avery Johnson with less than 10 seconds left to clinch the title for the Spurs.

The 1999–2000 season would prove to be the last one in New York for Ewing, as the Knicks, who had a 50–32 record that season, defeated Miami in another dramatic 7-game series in which Ewing's dunk with over a minute remaining in game 7, provided the winning margin in a 1-point road victory. They would however lose in the Eastern Conference Finals to the Pacers in six games. After the season, Ewing was traded on September 20, 2000 to the Seattle SuperSonics, and the Ewing era, which produced many successful playoff appearances but no NBA championship titles, came to an end.

Despite the loss of Ewing, the Knicks remained successful in the regular season, as they posted a 48–34 record. In the NBA playoffs, however, they fell in five games to the Toronto Raptors, failing to get past the first round of the playoffs for the first time in a decade.

Soon, the Knicks began suffering through a steep decline. After starting the season 10–9, the team was stunned on December 8, 2001 by the sudden resignation of Van Gundy. The team, which named longtime assistant Don Chaney as their new head coach, ended up with a 30–52 record, and for the first time since the 1986–87 season, they did not qualify for the playoffs.

The Knicks attempted to improve during the 2001–02 season by initiating a number of trades and free agent signings. Among these included acquiring guards Shandon Anderson and Howard Eisley, both of whom carried expensive, long-term contracts. These moves were criticized by many analysts and Knicks fans, as it was considered that not only were these players overpaid in light of their recent performances, but also because the contracts took up valuable salary-cap space. Such trades heavily contributed to the Knicks sky-rocketing payroll, which would burden them in the years to come. The Knicks improved slightly in 2002–03 but still delivered a disappointing season, posting a 37–45 record and failing to qualify for the playoffs for the second straight season.

After a 15–24 start to the 2003–04 season, the Knicks underwent a massive overhaul. Isiah Thomas was named the Knicks' president on December 22, 2003 after the firing of Scott Layden, and eventually replaced Don Chaney with Lenny Wilkens behind the bench. At the same time, Thomas orchestrated several trades, including one that brought point guard Stephon Marbury to the team. The team seemed to have good chemistry following the Marbury trade as he executed the pick and roll successfully with the team's two jump-shooting big men, Keith Van Horn and Michael Doleac. However, that chemistry unravelled when the latter two were traded in a three team trade with the Milwaukee Bucks and the Atlanta Hawks, bringing in Tim Thomas and Nazr Mohammed. The team qualified for the playoffs that year with a 39–43 record, but were swept by the New Jersey Nets in the first round. The series included a much publicized spat between the Knicks' Tim Thomas and Nets' Kenyon Martin, in which Thomas challenged Martin to a fight in the newspapers and called him "Fugazy".

The Knicks fared worse in the 2004–05 season, as they ended up with a 33–49 record. Wilkens resigned during the season, and Herb Williams served as interim coach for the rest of the season. During the off-season, the team signed Larry Brown to a five-year contract worth about $50 million, hoping he would lead the Knicks back to the NBA playoffs.

In the summer before the season, the Knicks acquired two centers. Jerome James was signed for the Mid-Level Exception for 5 years plus 1 year player option. Later, Chicago Bull Eddy Curry, who reportedly had a worrying heart condition, was refusing to take a controversial heart test, and was on the outs with John Paxson, Chicago's General Manager. The Bulls signed-and-traded him to the Knicks along with Antonio Davis for Tim Thomas, Michael Sweetney, the Knicks 2006 first round pick, and the right to swap first round picks with the Knicks in 2007, as well as 2007 and 2009 second round picks. Regrettably, Isiah Thomas did not lottery protect the picks, and the Knicks forfeited the 2nd pick in the 2006 draft, and the 9th in the 2007 draft. The Knicks' payroll was the highest in the league at over $130 million, but the team was among the worst in the NBA, having finished the 2005–06 season with a dismal 23–59 record and capped off with the firing and $18.5 million buy-out of coach Larry Brown.

Over the last two years, Thomas' trades have been highly criticized, bringing in expensive players, such as Stephon Marbury, Jamal Crawford, Jerome James, Malik Rose, Jalen Rose, and Steve Francis. Moreover, Thomas has also accepted many bad contracts to make these trades, such as those of Penny Hardaway, Jerome Williams or Maurice Taylor, and given up draft picks. To Thomas' credit, his draft picks of David Lee, Trevor Ariza (later traded by Thomas), Nate Robinson, and Wilson Chandler are considered wise, as was his signing free agent center Jackie Butler who later signed with the Spurs. Conversely, many considered his 2006 first-round draft pick of Renaldo Balkman very foolish, although Balkman's better-than-expected play in his rookie season led many to initially reverse this early sentiment before his play regressed in his second season.

Numerous anti-Knick websites have sprung up, most notably SellTheKnicks.com, who organized a march on Madison Square Garden, the home of the Draft, to protest Dolan's "abysmal" management of the Knicks' players and coaching staff.

On December 16, 2006, the Knicks and the Denver Nuggets broke into a brawl during their game in Madison Square Garden.

On December 20, 2006, with many players still serving the suspension above, David Lee created one of the most memorable plays in recent Knicks history during a game against the Charlotte Bobcats. With a tie game and 0.1 seconds left on the game clock in double overtime, Jamal Crawford inbounded from the sideline, near half-court. The ball sailed towards the basket, and with that 0.1 seconds still remaining on the game clock, Lee tipped the ball off of the backboard and into the hoop. Because of the Trent Tucker Rule (instituted in 1994), a player is allowed solely to tip the ball to score when the ball is put back into play with three-tenths of a second or less remaining. Because of this rule, the rarity of Lee's play increases. The Knicks won, 111–109 in double overtime.

The Knicks improved by 10 games in the 2006–2007 campaign, and were only eliminated from playoff contention in the last week of the season. Injuries ravaged the team at the end of the year, and they ended with a 33–49 (.402) record, avoiding a 50-loss season by defeating the Charlotte Bobcats 94–93 in a thriller on the last day of the season.

During the 2007 offseason, the organization sunk to a new low. Anucha Browne Sanders, a former Knicks executive, had filed a sexual harassment lawsuit in 2006 against Isiah Thomas, James Dolan, and Madison Square Garden LP. On October 2, 2007, the jury returned a verdict finding Thomas and Madison Square Garden liable for sexual harassment. The jury also levied $11.6 million in punitive damages against MSG. The trial proved embarrassing for the Knicks, Thomas, and Marbury, revealing sordid details about Knicks management and the environment at MSG.

At the 2007 NBA Draft, Thomas traded Channing Frye and Steve Francis to the Portland Trail Blazers for Zach Randolph, Fred Jones, and Dan Dickau. The draft also featured the Knicks selecting Wilson Chandler with the 23rd pick and later acquiring the rights to Demetris Nichols — the 53rd pick in the draft — from the Blazers. Dickau was traded to the Clippers for draft pick Jared Jordan. Jordan and Nichols were both released by the end of the preseason. The Knicks started out 2–1 and went on to post a 7th consecutive losing season and tied the franchise mark for their worst record ever, at 23-59. Many Knicks fans called for the firing of coach and GM Isiah Thomas. The chant "Fire Isiah" became common at Madison Square Garden over the course of the season. On November 29, 2007 after engaging in pre-game trash talk with the league-leading Celtics prior to a road game while they were still winless on the road, the Knicks were handed one of their worst defeats in their history by the Boston Celtics, with a final score of 104–59. This matched their third-largest margin of defeat.

In 2000 owner James Dolan instituted media training for all Garden employees who might deal with the press and an ironclad rule against team personnel criticizing others in the organization. This has resulted in controversial media policies limiting access to players, such as prohibiting reporters and Knicks' beat writers from interviewing players without an MSG public relations official present, forbidding one-on-one and exclusive interviews, and ex-communicating writers who write articles critical of the organization. Such measures are not standard practice for other NBA teams. The Knicks also do not make their medical staff available to the press. In 2004 fan favorite broadcaster Marv Albert was fired for criticizing the Knicks' poor play.

On April 2, 2008, James Dolan signed Indiana Pacers CEO and president Donnie Walsh to take over Isiah Thomas's role as team president. Upon the conclusion of the 2007–2008 regular season, Walsh fired Isiah Thomas, and on May 13, 2008, Walsh officially named former Phoenix Suns coach Mike D'Antoni as head coach. D'Antoni signed a four-year, $24 million deal to coach the team. On May 20, 2008, the Knicks received the 6th pick in the 2008 NBA draft via the draft lottery. On June 26, 2008, the Knicks selected Italian Danilo Gallinari with that pick. The Knicks also signed veteran guard Chris Duhon using a portion of their salary cap exemption. On November 21, 2008, the Knicks dealt Jamal Crawford to the Golden State Warriors for Al Harrington. Not long after, New York then traded their leading scorer Zach Randolph along with Mardy Collins to the Los Angeles Clippers for Cuttino Mobley and Tim Thomas. The idea behind these trades is to free up salary-cap space for the summer of 2010, when some notable free agents could hit the market such as LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, and Amar'e Stoudemire. In 2009 the Knicks traded Tim Thomas, Jerome James, and Anthony Roberson to the Chicago Bulls for Larry Hughes . They also sent Malik Rose to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Chris Wilcox. Additionally, the long standing controversy with Stephon Marbury ended when the two sides agreed to a buy-out of Marbury's contract, which allowed him to sign with any team he wishes when he cleared waivers on February 27th.

The current logo has been used since 1995, and it is a modernized version of the "roundball" logo the Knicks have used since 1964. The logo displays the words "NEW YORK KNICKS" (with "KNICKS" being larger than the other two words) above a basketball on top of an upturned isosceles triangle. The design is featured on the Knicks uniform shorts.

The Knicks also use a circular emblem, with the letters NYK, designed to look like a subway token. From the late 1960s to 1990, the Knicks used an orange interlocking NY logo—the same design as on the New York Yankees' jerseys—on their warmup jackets and later their shorts (sometimes within an "apple" silhouette, sometimes by itself); it remains on their throwback-uniform shorts.

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Washington Wizards

Washington Wizards logo

The Washington Wizards are a professional basketball team based in Washington, D.C. They play in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

The team now known as the Wizards began play as the Chicago Packers in the 1961-62 season. The next season, they changed their name to the Zephyrs. In 1963 the franchise moved to Baltimore, Maryland and became the Baltimore Bullets (no relation to the 1940s–50s Bullets franchise). In their first year in Baltimore, the Bullets finished 4th in a 5–team Western Division.

Prior to the 1964-65 NBA season the Bullets pulled off a blockbuster trade, sending Terry Dischinger, Rod Thorn and Don Kojis to the Detroit Pistons for Bailey Howell, Don Ohl, Bob Ferry and Wali Jones. The trade worked out well; Howell proved to be a hustling, fundamentally sound player who helped the Bullets get into the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. In the 1965 NBA Playoffs, the Bullets stunned the St. Louis Hawks 3–1, and advanced to the Western Conference Finals. In the finals, Baltimore managed to split the first four games with the Los Angeles Lakers before losing the series 4–2.

In the late 1960s, the Bullets drafted two future Hall of Famers: Earl Monroe, 1967 draft, #2 overall and Wes Unseld, 1968 draft, #2 overall. The team improved dramatically, from 36 wins the previous season to 57 in the 1968-69 season, and Unseld received both the Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player awards. The Bullets reached the playoffs with high expectations to go further, but they were eliminated by the New York Knicks in the first round. The next season the two teams met again in the first round, and although this one went to 7 games, the Knicks emerged victorious again.

In the 1970-71 season, the 42–40 Bullets again met the Knicks, this time though in the Eastern Conference Finals. With the Knicks team captain Willis Reed injured in the finals, the injury-free Bullets took advantage of his absence, and in Game 7 at New York's Madison Square Garden, the Bullets' Gus Johnson made a critical basket late in the game to lift the Bullets over the Knicks 93–91 and advance to their first NBA Finals in franchise history. They were swept in four games by the powerful Milwaukee Bucks.

Even after Monroe was traded (to the Knicks), the Bullets remained a playoff contender throughout the 1970s. Following a less than spectacular 1971-72 NBA season, the Bullets improved dramatically by acquiring Elvin Hayes from the Houston Rockets and drafting Kevin Porter. After a slow start the Bullets began to make their charge in December, posting a 10–4 record on the way to capturing the Central Division title for the 3rd straight year. The Bullets would again face the Knicks in the 1973 NBA Playoffs, losing for the fourth time in five series against New York.

In 1973, the team moved to Landover, Maryland and became the Capital Bullets; they changed their name to the Washington Bullets the following season.

During November 1973, while waiting for the completion of their new arena in Landover, the Bullets played their home games at Cole Field House on the campus of the University of Maryland in College Park. The Capital Centre (later known as the USAir/US Airways Arena) opened on December 2, 1973, with the Bullets defeating the SuperSonics. Through the mid-1990s, the Bullets still played a few games per season in Baltimore.

The 60–22 Bullets made it back to the 1975 NBA Playoffs. That year Washington posted a 36–5 home record at the Capital Centre. In the first round of the playoffs, they survived a 7–game series against the Buffalo Braves as both teams won all of their games at home. In the Eastern Conference Finals, they beat the defending NBA Champion Boston Celtics in 6 games to advance to the NBA Finals. The Bullets were favorites to win the NBA Championship, but were shockingly swept by the Rick Barry-led Golden State Warriors in 4 games. They lost game 4 at the Capital Centre.

The loss at the NBA Finals lingered into the 1975-76 NBA season as they won 12 fewer games than last year, and in the playoffs they were eliminated by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 7 games. After the season the Bullets fired head coach K.C. Jones, despite having a career 62% winning percentage as the Bullets head coach.

In the 1976-77 NBA season under new head coach Dick Motta, the Bullets would again fall short of the Central Division title for the second straight year. Elvin Hayes finished 6th in the league in rebounds with 12.5 rebounds per game. After opening the 1977 NBA Playoffs with a 3–game series victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Bullets took a 2–1 series lead in the second round of against the Houston Rockets. With a chance to take a 3–1 series lead at home, the Bullets would lose 107–103 as the Rockets went on take the series in 6 games.

Although they had future hall of famers Elvin Hayes and Wes Unseld on the team, The Bullets finished the season 44–38 and were a longshot to win the NBA Championship, but coach Dick Motta used the famed phrase "It ain't over 'til the fat lady sings". This became the rallying cry for the Bullets as they finished a playoff run that led to the NBA Finals, defeating the Seattle SuperSonics in 7 games to bring a professional sports championship to Washington D.C. for the first time in 36 years.

In the 1978-79 NBA season the Bullets moved to the Atlantic Division, capturing the title in their first season there. They entered the 1979 NBA Playoffs having lost 8 of the final 11 games to finish the regular season at 54–28. In the playoffs the Bullets nearly blew a 3–1 series lead against the Atlanta Hawks, but managed to hold off the Hawks in 7 games.

In the Eastern Conference Finals, they trailed the San Antonio Spurs 3–1, but they mounted a comeback by winning 2 straight games to force a Game 7 at the Cap Center. The Bullets would rally again, overcoming a 4th–quarter deficit to beat George Gervin and the Spurs 107-105 in one of the NBA's all-time greatest games and advance to the NBA Finals and a rematch with the Seattle SuperSonics.

In Game 1 of the Finals, the Bullets defeated the SuperSonics, 99-97, on two game-winning free throws. However, they lost the next four games - and the series - to Seattle. Still, just appearing in the series gave the Bullets the distinction of being the only team to play in the NBA Finals four times during the 1970s.

Age and injuries finally caught up with the Bullets. In the 1979-80 NBA season, they barely made the playoffs as they captured the sixth and final playoff spot with a tiebreaker despite posting a 39–43 record. In the playoffs, they were swept by the Philadelphia 76ers in a 2–game playoff series. The following year the Bullets failed to make the playoffs for the first time in 13 years. Wes Unseld retired and Elvin Hayes was traded to the Houston Rockets the following season.

In '81, Washington played strong under the coaching of Gene Shue and Don Moran, finishing the regular season with a 43–39 record, and although they advanced to the Eastern Conference semifinals in the playoffs, they had clearly lost their form of the late 70's. The Bullets continued to play with the same talent they had in the previous year. They finished with a winning record, but in a highly competitive Atlantic Division they finished last and missed the playoffs.

The next two years saw the Bullets continue to play mediocre basketball as they finished with losing records but they made the playoffs in the new expanded NBA Playoffs format that involved the 16 best teams to make the playoffs; the Bullets were eliminated in both years in the first round.

In 1985, the Bullets acquired Manute Bol, whose specialty was blocking shots. That year, he blocked 397 shots (a Bullets record), part of a team that blocked 716 shots (a Bullets team record). But the Bullets finished with a disappointing 39–43 record, and were eliminated by the 76ers in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. The Bullets acquired center Moses Malone from the Philadelphia 76ers for center Jeff Ruland the following season for hope of improvement. Moses would lead the team in scoring with a 24.1 points per game as he would be joined by Jeff Malone who averaged 22.0 points per game. The Bullets' 42–40 record would be their last winning season until the 1996-97 NBA season. Washington was eliminated by the Detroit Pistons in 3 games in the playoffs.

The Bullets selected Muggsy Bogues twelfth overall in the '87 Draft, who at 5'3" is the smallest player in NBA history. The Bullets would get off to a slow start as coach Kevin Loughery was fired 27 games into the season with the Bullets holding an 8–19 record. To replace Loughery, the Bullets hired former MVP Wes Unseld. Under Unseld the Bullets improved as they were able to reach the playoffs again with a record of 38–44. After losing the first 2 games on the road in the first round of the 1988 NBA Playoffs to the Detroit Pistons, the Bullets fought back and forced a 5th game with 2 home wins. They would lose game 5 by 21 points. It would be 9 years before Washington would return to the NBA Playoffs.

The Bullets got off to a 5–1 start in 1989, but hopes of a good season faded quickly as they lost 16 of 18 games from Mid-December to Mid-January. They would finish with a 31–51 record despite stellar seasons by Jeff Malone and Bernard King, who averaged 24.3 and 22.3 points per game respectively to lead the team.

The lone highlight of the Bullets 30 win 1990–91 season was the successful comeback effort by Bernard King as he recovered from knee surgery he suffered while playing for the Knicks in the 1984-85 NBA season to finish 3rd in the NBA in scoring with a 28.4 points per game. In 1990, the team would name Susan O'Malley as its president, the first female president of a franchise in the history of the NBA. She is the sister of former Los Angeles Dodgers owner Peter O'Malley and the daughter of former Dodger owner Walter O'Malley.

The Bullets posted records of 25–57 in the 1991–92 season and 22–60 in the 1992–93 season due to injuries and inconsistent play.

Injuries would continue to bite the Bullets as key players Rex Chapman and Calbert Cheaney (the club's 1st round draft pick) miss significant stretches, and Pervis Ellison misses almost the entire season. The result was a miserable 24–58 record for the 1993-94 season, but help from the Michigan Wolverines was on the way.

The Bullets selected Juwan Howard in the 1994 NBA Draft and traded Tom Gugliotta along with three first round draft picks to the Golden State Warriors for the rights to Chris Webber. While the season started out with promise, a shoulder injury to Chris Webber (ironically against the Warriors) caused him to miss 19 games and the Bullets struggled through the rest of the season finishing a then franchise worst (percentage wise) 21–61. Webber averaged 20.1 ppg and 9.6 rpg but declined surgery for his dislocated shoulder. This would prove costly for the next season.

The Bullets' 95–96 season seemed over before it started as Webber suffered a dislocated left shoulder in a preseason game against Indiana on October 21 and opened the season on the injured list. He was activated on Nov. 27, but strained his shoulder against New York on Dec. 29. After hoping the injury would get better with rest, Webber finally underwent surgery on Feb. 1 which sidelined him for the remainder of the season. The Bullets were 9–6 with Webber in the lineup as he averaged a team-high 23.7 points plus 7.6 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 1.80 steals in 37.2 minutes per game when he was able to play. Other players injured included Mark Price (who only played in 7 games) and Robert Pack (31 games played out of 82). Bright spots of the season included the selection of Rasheed Wallace in the 1995 NBA Draft and the All-Star play of Howard. Juwan averaged a career best 22.1 ppg and 8.1 rpg and kept the Bullets slim playoff hopes alive until the end of the season. The Bullets improved to 39–43 but just missed the playoffs.

Washington, boasting the league's tallest player (center Gheorghe Mureşan 7'7"), two very athletic forwards (Juwan and Webber) and one of the league's top point guards (Rod Strickland), struggled at the start of the 1996–97 season to a 22–24 start. That led to the dismissal of Head Coach Jim Lynam. Bernie Bickerstaff, an assistant coach with the Bullets when they won their only NBA Championship in 1978, was called upon to resurrect his former team. The Bullets responded, winning 16 of their final 21 games to finish 44–38, their best record since 1978-79. The late surge enabled the Bullets to climb within reach of the Cleveland Cavaliers for the final playoff spot. In a winner-take-the-eighth-playoff-spot game with the Cavaliers on the season's final day, the Bullets squeezed past Cleveland 85–81 to end the franchise's longest playoff drought. And while the Bullets were swept by the Bulls in the first round, they lost the three games by a total of just 18 points, a sign that the team is one to be reckoned with.

Webber led the way in scoring (20.1 ppg), rebounding (10.3) and blocks (1.9) and shot 51.8 percent from the floor to make his first All-Star team and became the first All-star of the franchise. Howard averaged 19.1 ppg and 8.0 rpg, while Strickland averaged 17.2 ppg and 1.74 spg and finished fifth in the league in assists with 8.9 per game. Muresan dominated the middle and led the NBA in field goal percentage (.599). Washington also received valuable contributions from Calbert Cheaney (10.6 ppg) and Tracy Murray (10.0 ppg).

In 1995, owner Abe Pollin announced he was changing the team's name because Bullets had acquired violent overtones that had made him increasingly uncomfortable over the years. The final straw was the assassination of his longtime friend, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. A contest was held to choose a new name and the choices were narrowed to the Dragons, Express, Stallions, Sea Dogs, or Wizards. On May 15, 1997, the Bullets officially became the Washington Wizards. The change generated some controversy because Wizard is a rank in the Ku Klux Klan. A new logo was unveiled and the team colors were changed from the traditional red, white and blue to blue, black and bronze, the same colors as the Washington Capitals, a hockey team also owned by Pollin (the Capitals were traditionally red, white, and blue and would return to that scheme in 2007). That same year the Wizards moved to the then MCI Center, now called Verizon Center. The Verizon Center is also home to the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League, the Washington Mystics of the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) and the Georgetown Hoyas men's college basketball team.

In 1998, they became the brother team to the WNBA's Washington Mystics, and remained officially thus until 2005 when the Mystics were sold to Lincoln Holdings, parent company of the Washington Capitals.

The newly-named Wizards began the 1997-98 season playing 5 home games at the Capital Centre before moving to the new MCI Center on December 2, 1997. The Wizards finished the season with a 42–40 record including 4 straight victories to end the season but just missed the playoffs. Highlights of the season included Webber leading the team in scoring (21.9 ppg) and rebounding (9.5 rpg). Strickland led the league in assists (10.5 apg) before suffering an injury near the end of the season. Tracy Murray averaged 15.1 ppg off the bench including a 50 point game against Golden State. Off court distractions led to the trade of Webber to the Sacramento Kings for Mitch Richmond and Otis Thorpe in May 1998.

The Wizards finished the lockout shortened season of 1998-99 with a record of 18-32. Mitch Richmond led the team in scoring with a 19.7 ppg average. In the 1999-00 season, the Wizards finished with a 29–53 record. Mitch Richmond led the team with 17.4 ppg. 1999 NBA Draft pick Richard Hamilton led the team in scoring the following season with 18.1 ppg on a team that finished with a 19-63 record (a franchise low).

On February 23, 2001, the Wizards were involved in a blockbuster trade days before the trading deadline. The team sent Juwan, Obinna Ekezie and Calvin Booth to the Dallas Mavericks. In return, Washington received Hubert Davis, Courtney Alexander, Christian Laettner, Loy Vaught and Etan Thomas along with $3 million.

After retiring from the Chicago Bulls in early 1999, Michael Jordan became the Washington Wizards’ president of basketball operations as well as a minority owner in January 2000. However in September 2001, Michael Jordan came out of retirement at age 38 to play basketball for the Washington Wizards. Jordan stated that he was returning “for the love of the game.” Because of NBA rules, he had to divest himself of any ownership of the team. Before the All-Star break, Jordan was only one of two players to average more than 25 points, 5 assists, and 5 rebounds as he led the Wizards to a 26–21 record. Unfortunately, after the all-star break, Jordan’s knee could not handle the workload of a full-season as he ended the season on the injured list, and the Wizards concluded the season with a 37–45 record. Still, Jordan had led the Wizards to an 18-win improvement from the previous season.

Jordan announced he would return for the 2002-03 season, and this time he was determined to be equipped with reinforcements, as he traded for All-Star Jerry Stackhouse and signed budding star Larry Hughes. Jordan even accepted a sixth-man role on the bench in order for his knee to survive the rigors of an 82–game season. However, a combination of numerous team injuries and uninspired play led to Jordan’s return to the starting lineup, where he tried to rebound the franchise from its early-season struggles. By the end of the season, the Wizards finished with a 37–45 record once again. Jordan ended the season as the only Wizard to play in all 82 games, as he averaged 20.0 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 1.5 steals in 37.0 minutes per game.

After the season, Wizards' majority owner Abe Pollin fired Jordan as team president, much to the shock of teammates, associates, and the public. Michael Jordan felt he was betrayed, thinking that he would get his ownership back after his playing days ended, but Pollin justified Jordan's dismissal by noting that Jordan had detrimental effects on the team, such as benching Larry Hughes for Tyronn Lue, making poor trades, and squandering the teams' 2001 1st round draft pick on high schooler Kwame Brown who never panned out. Without MJ in the fold the following year, the Washington Wizards were not expected to win, and they didn’t. Despite the signing of future All-Star point guard Gilbert Arenas, the team stumbled to a 25–57 record in the 2003-04 season.

The Wizards replaced Jordan's managerial role with coach Eddie Jordan and General Manager Ernie Grunfeld. The team's current roster only has two holdovers from the Michael Jordan era: Etan Thomas and Brendan Haywood.

The 2004-05 NBA season saw the team (now in the new Southeast Division) post its finest regular season record in 26 years (45-37) and marked the first time the franchise had ever made the playoffs as the Wizards. In the offseason, the team traded Jerry Stackhouse, Christian Laettner, and the draft rights to Devin Harris for Antawn Jamison. During the regular season, the scoring trio of Gilbert Arenas, Antawn Jamison and Larry Hughes was the highest in the NBA and earned the nickname of "The Big Three." Hughes also led the NBA in steals with 2.89 steals per game. Arenas and Jamison were both named to the 2005 Eastern Conference All-Star team, marking the first time Washington had two players in the All-Star game since Jeff Malone and Moses Malone represented the Bullets in the 1987 All-Star Game.

With a 93-82 win over the Chicago Bulls on April 13, 2005, the Wizards clinched a playoff spot for the first time since 1996-97. Long suffering fans celebrated by buying over 16,000 playoff tickets in two and a half hours the day tickets went on sale. In game 3 of the first round against the Bulls, the Wizards won their first playoff game since 1988. Adding to the "long-overdue" feeling was the fact that game 3 was also the first NBA playoff game to be held within Washington, D.C. city limits. In the Wizards' game 5 victory in Chicago, Arenas hit a buzzer-beater to win the game and the Wizards took their first lead in a playoff series since 1986. In Game 6 at the MCI Center, Jared Jeffries picked up a loose ball and went in for an uncontested tiebreaking dunk with 32 seconds left, thus giving the Washington Wizards a 94-91 win and the team's their first playoff series win in 23 years. They were only the 12th team in NBA history to win a playoff series after being down 0-2.

In the conference semifinals, the Wizards were swept by the Miami Heat, the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference in the 2005 NBA Playoffs.

The 2005–06 NBA season was one filled with ups and downs. During the offseason, Washington acquired Caron Butler and Antonio Daniels. During the regular season, the Wizards again had the best scoring trio in the NBA, this time consisting of Arenas, Jamison and Butler as the "Big Three." The Wizards started the 2005–06 season at 5–1, but went on an 8–17 funk to go to 13–18 through 31 games. Then, they went 13–5 in the next 18 games. On April 5, 2006, the team was 39–35 and looking to close in on the 45 win mark achieved the previous year, until Caron suffered a thumb sprain and the Wizards lost all five games without him. Butler returned and the team pulled out their final three games, against the Pistons, Cavs and Bucks, all playoff bound teams, to finish the year at 42–40 and clinch the 5th seed in the Eastern Conference. They averaged 101.7 points a game, 3rd in the NBA and tops in the East and clinched a playoff berth for the second year in a row for the first time since 1987.

Their first round match up with Cleveland was widely seen as the most evenly matched series in the 2006 NBA Playoffs. The teams exchanged wins during the first two games in Cleveland, with Game 2 highlighted by the Wizards holding LeBron James to 7-25 shooting from the floor while Brendan Haywood gave James a hard foul in the first quarter that many cited as the key to shaking up the rest of LeBron's game. In Game 3 at the Verizon Center, James hit a 4-footer on the way down with 5.7 seconds left to take the game and the series lead for the Cavs with a 97–96 win. Arenas missed a potential game winning 3-pointer on the other end to seal the win for the Cavs. Game 4 saw the Wizards heat up again, as Gilbert scored 20 in the fourth quarter after claiming he changed his jersey, shorts, shoes and tights in the locker room and the Wizards won 106–96. Yet in Games 5 and 6, the Cavs would take control of the series, both games decided by one point in overtime.

In Game 5, despite the Wizards being down 107-100 with 1:18 to play, the team drove back and eventually tied the game on Caron Butler's layup with 7.5 seconds remaining to send the game to OT, where James would score on a blatant travel that the referees seemed to ignore due to preferential star treatment with 0.9 seconds left in overtime to send the Cavs to a 121-120 win. The series came back to the newly-named Verizon Center for Game 6, where the game went back and forth all night. The Wizards blew a 14-point first-quarter lead, then for 24 minutes, from early in the second quarter to early in the fourth, neither team led by more than five points at any time. The Wizards blew a seven point lead with just under 5 to play and needed Arenas to hit a 31-footer at the end of regulation to take the game to overtime. In OT, Gilbert missed two key free throws after James taunted Arenas at the line. Cleveland rebounded the ball, went downcourt and Damon Jones hit a 17-foot baseline jumper with 4.8 seconds remaining to give the Cavs the lead for good. Butler would miss a 3-pointer on the other end to seal the game, and the series, for the Cavaliers.

The 2006-07 season started out very promising for the Wizards. In the offseason they signed free agents DeShawn Stevenson and Darius Songaila. Etan Thomas beat out Haywood for the starting center job. After starting the season 0-8 on the road, Washington rebounded to win 6 of 7 away from Verizon Center. After a 4–9 November, Washington went 22–9 through December and January. Arenas scored a franchise-record 60 points against the Lakers on December 17. Both he and Eddie Jordan were named player of the month and coach of the month for December, respectively. On January 3 and again on January 15, Gilbert hit buzzer-beating three-pointers to beat Milwaukee and Utah.

On January 30, Antawn Jamison went down with a sprained left knee in a win against Detroit. Washington went 4–8 in the 12 games without him. On February 3, Songaila made his Wizards debut against the Lakers. On February 18th, Eddie Jordan became the first Wizards/Bullets coach to coach the NBA All-Star Game since Dick Motta in 1978-1979. Arenas played in his 3rd straight All-Star game and Caron Butler made his All-Star Game debut.

On March 14, Butler went out with a knee injury that kept him out of the lineup for six games. He returned for only three games until he fractured his right hand on April 1 against Milwaukee. On April 4, Gilbert suffered a season-ending knee injury, of the meniscus. An April 15th article in The Washington Post pointed out that with Arenas and Caron gone, the team had lost 42.3% of their offensive production, quite possibly "the most costly" loss for any team in the midst of a playoff hunt in NBA history.

Despite their late season struggles without Arenas and Butler, the Wizards still managed to make the Eastern Conference playoffs, taking the 7th seed at 41-41. They were swept 4 games to none in a rematch of last year's first-round series against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Despite a depleted roster, the Wizards still managed to keep things close in every game in the series and only lost the final three games by a combined 20 points. Business-wise, the team enjoyed their best attendance figures in the post-Michael Jordan era with a season attendance of 753,283 (18,372 per game) .

The Wizards retained a majority of their roster from the 2006–07 season, only losing Jarvis Hayes to Detroit, Calvin Booth to the Philadelphia 76ers, and Michael Ruffin to the Milwaukee Bucks as free agents. Washington also signed Oleksiy Pecherov, the team's first-round pick in 2006, as well as 2007 picks Nick Young and Dominic McGuire. Etan Thomas missed the regular season after undergoing open-heart surgery.

The team began the season starting 0–5, but rebounded to win six straight. After 8 games, Gilbert Arenas underwent surgery to repair a torn medial meniscus in his left knee, as well as a microfracture surgery. This was the same knee he had injured the previous year. The injury forced Arenas out for a total of 68 games. Midway through the season, Caron Butler was forced to the sidelines for a total of 20 games with what initially was a strained hip flexor, but turned out to be a labral tear. Despite all of the injuries, the Wizards managed to go 43-39 on the regular season, good for 5th place in the Eastern Conference and a first-round playoff matchup with the Cleveland Cavaliers for the third straight season.

The Washington Wizards will be having minor modifications on their team jerseys and logos. To accommodate the gold/black alternate jerseys they introduced last season along with the design change on the Verizon Center floor, they changed their secondary team colors from bronze to metallic gold, and the player's name on the back of the jersey is changed from white/blue with bronze trim to gold (blue on home uniforms) with a change in lettering.

The Wizards emerged from the offseason retaining two of their main pieces of their core: Gilbert Arenas and Antawn Jamison. Arenas signed a 6-year, $111 million contract, while Jamison signed a 4-year, $50 million contract. The Wizards did not, however, re-sign guard Roger Mason, who signed with the San Antonio Spurs. The Wizards did add guards Dee Brown and Juan Dixon, and drafted JaVale McGee 18th overall in the 2008 NBA Draft.

In September, Gilbert Arenas underwent a third operation on his surgically repaired left knee to clean out fluid and debris, and is expected to miss at least the first month of the season. In the first game of the preseason, Antawn Jamison suffered a right knee contusion, and is expected to miss the rest of the preseason. Center Brendan Haywood also announced that he will undergo surgery on his right wrist and is expected to miss four to six months. The preseason also marked the return of Etan Thomas who had missed all of the 2007-2008 season while recovering from open heart surgery.

The Wizards opened the season on October 29th with a loss against New Jersey, and have dropped 15 of their first 19 games. Head coach Eddie Jordan was fired on November 24th after a 1-10 start, and was replaced by interim Ed Tapscott. On December 10th, Washington acquired guards Javaris Crittenton and Mike James in a three-team deal that sent Antonio Daniels to New Orleans. The team also waived guard Dee Brown. They won 14 of their first 60 games, going 14-46 and are en route to suffering their worst season in franchise history.

One of the few high points of the season came on February 27th when recently-inaugurated President Barack Obama attended the visit by the Chicago Bulls, sitting in a northeast court-side seat; the Wizards produced their second-biggest victory margin of the season with a 113-90 win, with Antawn Jamison pacing the side with 27 points.

In the 2006 NBA Playoffs, the Wizards matched up with LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in a first-round matchup, in what would turn out to be the first of (as of 2008) three consecutive postseason matchups, as well as James' first-ever playoff appearance. The series was considered to be one of the most evenly matched of all first-round series that year. After suffering a loss in Game 1, Washington came back to win Game 2 and steal home-court advantage heading back to Verizon Center for Game 3. However, Cleveland stole home-court advantage right back. Washington came back to tie the series at two apiece with a win in Game 4, but suffered two consecutive one-point overtime losses(in which LeBron James traveled but was not called) and thus were eliminated 4 games to 2.

The Wizards and Cavaliers met again in the 2007 NBA Playoffs, this time as a 2-7 matchup. The injury-riddled Wizards (they were missing Gilbert Arenas and Caron Butler) were swept 4-0 by Cleveland. Antawn Jamison averaged a team-high 32 points per game in the series.

In April 2008, Arenas made comments saying Cleveland was only a .500 team since a midseason blockbuster trade. After the conclusion of the 2007-08 regular season, the Wizards and Cavaliers were pitted against each other yet again in a 4-5 first-round matchup. Following a regular-season win on March 13th, guard DeShawn Stevenson made comments saying LeBron James was "overrated." James responded to the comment by saying that he would not return the insult, as that would be "almost like Jay-Z made by Soulja Boy." Soulja Boy made an appearance at Game 3 of the series (played in Washington) in support of the Wizards; his music was played over the PA system. Jay-Z, a close friend of James, got involved in the rivalry as well, making a song that trashed Stevenson. The day after Game 3, James reserved a private room at a D.C. area nightclub called "Love" for himself and his teammates. Jay-Z's new song was played while Cavs guard Damon Jones made negative gestures about the Wizards. Unbeknownst to the Cavaliers, Wizards star Caron Butler and his wife were also present, and they stormed out of the nightclub. According to the ABC broadcast of Game 4, Butler and the Wizards have sworn never to visit that particular club again, despite often frequenting it in the past. After suffering a late-game loss in Game 4 at the hands of a Delonte West three-pointer, Washington won a nail-biting Game 5 in Cleveland to bring the series back to Washington for Game 6 of the series. Prior to Game 6, Darius Songaila, a reserve forward, was suspended for hitting LeBron James in the face in the first quarter of Game 5, and without Songaila, the Wizards suffered a season-ending defeat to Cleveland, and lost the series 4–2.

Dating back to the start of the 2005-06 season, the Wizards and Cavaliers have played each other a combined 31 times (including preseason), far more than they have played any other team in the league.

The Hall also honors Arnold "Red" Auerbach, who played collegiately at D.C.'s George Washington University, and Horace "Bones" McKinney, who played for the Washington Capitols in the early days of the NBA. Both men also coached the Capitols, who played from the NBA's founding in 1946 until the team folded in 1951.

Most games are carried on TV on Comcast SportsNet which is available in the Washington, D.C. area and other parts of the Mid-Atlantic states. Alternate local carriers include WDCW-TV and cable station NewsChannel 8. Wizards games are announced by Steve Buckhantz and Phil Chenier. Chris Miller serves as a sideline reporter for some broadcasts (including most Wizards' home games). On the radio, Wizards games are broadcast on WTEM-980 AM, with Dave Johnson and Glenn Consor doing analysis.

Blogs that cover the Wizards include Bullets Forever, Truth About It, and The Wizznutzz.

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2006–07 Cleveland Cavaliers season

The 2006-07 Cleveland Cavaliers season was the 37th season of NBA basketball in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavaliers finished the season with a 50–32 record, a second place finish in the Central Division, and the champions of the Eastern Conference. LeBron James was the team's leading scorer and finished in 2nd place in league MVP voting.

The Cavaliers did not make a trade during the 2006-07 NBA season.

The Cavaliers did not sign any free agents during the 2006-07 NBA season.

A rematch of the previous year's first round series was spoiled when Wizards star Gilbert Arenas and Caron Butler were both forced out of the playoffs due to injuries received in the later parts of the regular season. Without Arenas and Butler, the Wizards found themselves unable to stop LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers from sweeping them out of the playoffs. It was Cleveland's first playoff sweep in franchise history.

The Cavaliers advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 1992, while the Nets have lost in the Conference Semifinals in three out of the last four years.

New Jersey Nets point guard Jason Kidd averaged a triple double the entire playoffs, scoring 14.6 points, grabbing 10.9 rebounds and dishing out 10.9 assists per game.

In a rematch of last year's thrilling second-round series, the Pistons and the Cavaliers matched up in perhaps one of the closest contested series in NBA history, with the first five games being decided by 6 points or less. The spotlight of the series fell on Cleveland's LeBron James. Despite gaining some momentum in the opening games of the series against the experienced Pistons, key last-second decisions by James led to Cleveland losses in Games 1 and 2 in Detroit, by identical scores where Cleveland led for most of the two games. They faced a 0–2 deficit for the second straight year but would easily remember from the year before they could win three straight games to get back into the series.

With media circles on his back for his complacency in these games (James had a playoff career low 10 points in Game 1), LeBron came back to will the Cavs to close victories in Games 3 and 4 in Cleveland, evening the series at 2. The series shifted back to Detroit for a Game 5 that proved to be one of the most memorable postseason games in recent NBA history. In a match that went into double overtime, the Cavaliers stunned the Pistons on their home court, thanks to LeBron James' playoff career-high 48 point performance. James scored the Cavaliers' final 25 points of the game, including all 18 points in overtime making it two straight two-point wins at the Palace in Game 5.

This time around the heavily favored Cavaliers took advantage of their home court in 2007 and exploded in Game 6 to close out the Pistons once and for all, and to clinch the franchise's first trip to the NBA Finals. Rookie Daniel Gibson scored his career high 31 points including five three pointers to lift the Cavs in the second half behind a roaring home crowd.

LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers entered the 2007 Finals as newcomers. Game 1 was the first NBA Finals appearance in franchise history, and the first for each of its players (other than reserve point guard Eric Snow). However, the San Antonio Spurs had been to the Finals in three of the past eight seasons, winning a championship each time. With solid performances by Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili, the Spurs won the series opener in convincing fashion, limiting LeBron James to 14 points on 4–16 shooting.

The Spurs took a stranglehold on momentum in Game 2. The Spurs big three overwhelmed the Cavs and the Spurs led by as many as 29 points in the third quarter. They absolutely dominated game during first 3 quarters and played show-time basketball. A furious 25–6 rally by Cleveland in the final quarter wasn't enough as the Spurs took a 2–0 lead in the series.

Rookie Daniel Gibson started Game 3 in place of the injured Larry Hughes but scored a series-low 2 points on 1–10 shooting. As a team the Cavs shot only .367 but out-rebounded the Spurs 48–41. Zydrunas Ilgauskas had a 2006-07 season high 18 rebounds. On the game's final play, LeBron James missed a potential game-tying 29 foot 3-pointer (which he contested as a foul on Bruce Bowen).

Game 3 was the lowest-scoring Finals game since 1955, with Tim Duncan of the Spurs having his lowest scoring game in his NBA Finals career, with 14 points.

San Antonio started out strong through the first three quarters, leading by as many as 11. Cleveland would stage a rally near the end of the third quarter and the first five minutes of the fourth, scoring 14 consecutive points to take its first second-half lead of the series. However, the Spurs would stage a 12–3 rally of their own to retake the lead and win the series in a 4–0 sweep.

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Source : Wikipedia