Archive for April, 2012

This day in Michael Jordan History: 4/28/88

Posted in Basketball on April 28, 2012 by hoopsencyclopedia

MJ opens the 1988 playoffs with a bang with 50 points on 19-35 (54.3% shooting), 7 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks against the Cavaliers. This was a memorable series due to the myriad of records MJ set here. In the five game series, MJ would score, 50, 55, 38, 44 and 39. He set records for most points in a 5 games series (226), most field goals made in a 5 games series (86), and highest scoring average in a 5 game series (45.2 ppg). He also set the record with the only back to back 50 point games in NBA playoff history (50 and 55). MJ was absolutely on a different planet during this era. Enjoy.

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This day in Michael Jordan History: 4/24/88

Posted in Basketball with tags on April 24, 2012 by hoopsencyclopedia

MJ ends the 1988 on April 24 with a bang – 46 points against the Boston Celtics on 16-25 shooting (64%), 6 rebs and 6 assists. This is Air Jordan. Thanks for Balthus23 for this one.

Kobe on Verge of Winning his 3rd Scoring Title and Joining Exclusive Club

Posted in Basketball on April 19, 2012 by hoopsencyclopedia

The season end is near and although there is a tight battle for the scoring crown this year between Kobe (28.1ppg), and Durant (27.8ppg), I just don’t think Kobe is going to let his 3rd scoring title slip through his hands. This is most likely his last chance ever at winning this crown again so I expect Kobe to battle this one out if he has to.

That being said, should he go on to win his 3rd scoring crown, he would join an exclusive club: The Age 30+ Scoring Champion Club. As of right now, the only members are MJ and Jerry West. Here’s how Kobe will stack up should he become a member:

 

Age 30+ Scoring Champ Club 

1) Michael Jordan   Age 35,   28.7ppg,    46.5%fg

2) Michael Jordan   Age 34,   29.6ppg,    48.6%fg

3) Michael Jordan   Age 33 ,  30.4ppg,    49.5%fg

4)* Kobe Bryant       Age 33,   28.1ppg,    43.0%fg

5) Jerry West         Age 31,   31.2ppg,    49.7%fg

6) Michael Jordan   Age 30,   32.6ppg,    49.5%fg

 

It’s likely that MJ probably would have been a member of this club three more times at ages 31, 32, and 36 had he not retired several times in his prime. But, still not too shabby.

Although Kobe overshot his way here in an Iversonian style at 43%fg; needing a whopping 3.8 shots more per game than Durant to score a mere 0.3 more, he still put up some decent scoring streaks considering his age, nagging injuries, and new system. So given the shortened 66 game season, here’s a half-hearted, muted applause for possibly winning scoring title #3 and joining MJ and West.

Should Kobe win, he also moves up a notch and ties several players who have 3 scoring titles on the all time list:

 

Most Scoring Titles List 

1) Michael Jordan       10 scoring titles

2) Wilt Chamberlain    7 scoring titles

3) George Gervin        4 scoring titles

4) Allen Iverson          4 scoring titles

5) Julius Erving            3 scoring titles (ABA)

5) Neil Johnston          3 scoring titles

5) Bob McAdoo            3 scoring titles

5) George Mikan          3 scoring titles

5)* Kobe Bryant            3 scoring titles

 

**UPDATE: Kobe Bryant has conceded the scoring title to Kevin Durant.

This day in Michael Jordan History: 4/18/98

Posted in Basketball on April 19, 2012 by hoopsencyclopedia

Yet again, against my hometown Knicks, MJ was at again. This time, exactly fourteen years ago on 4/18/98, MJ would play his last regular season game ever as a Bull and say, “Goodbye NBA” with 44 points. One of the best things about this edit is that it includes comments of awe from many of the legends who played against him.

Looks like Lebron has his Third MVP, but can the Heat Win?

Posted in Basketball on April 18, 2012 by hoopsencyclopedia

The ending of the season is as exciting as the playoffs since you see teams step it up as they jockey for playoff position. You can also see who has the desire to take it to the next level or fade away. Now that the end is near, it seems to be clear that Lebron James has his third MVP locked up. With his recent 17 point explosion to close out the Nets, dominant stats and ability to raise his game without Wade, James has added an exclamation point to his already stellar year.

The MVP is usually reserved for the best player on the best team and aside from Lebron, only Kevin Durant has the numbers and an elite team to potentially steal the award. The Thunder and the Heat basically have the same win-loss record right now but Durant has been a bit inconsistent the past few games. There is still time for him to close out the season on a higher note than Lebron but time is running out.

As for Lebron, his overall numbers were rivaling Michael Jordan’s best statistical seasons for much of the year. Furthermore, he has flourished during Wade’s absence – which begs to ask, does the Heat even need Wade? But let’s look at some impressive numbers for Lebron at the moment:

#1 in win shares (13.56)
#1 in player efficiency (30.47)
#3 in scoring avg. (27.1ppg)
#10 in defensive rtg. (98.14)
*shooting career high in fg% (52.9%)
*highest fg% amongst top ten scoring leaders

That’s pretty outstanding stuff and even if Durant goes on a tear, Lebron’s defense still has to give him the edge. Forget ESPN who pumps up Lebron so much it can be irritating. Lebron truly is the best overall pick right now and the game’s best overall player. His superior athleticism, consistency, 2-way domination, and ability to play a complete game separates him from the pack.

But does that mean the Heat can win it all? That’s a more difficult question to answer since Lebron and the Heat have weaknesses, but, it is a question I will try to tackle tomorrow or in the next few days.

This day in Michael Jordan History: 4/16/87

Posted in Basketball on April 17, 2012 by hoopsencyclopedia

Oh it was amazing watching those MJ-Nique battles when both could jump out of the gym because not only were you going to see them bring out the best in each other, you were going to see an aerial display of epic proportions. On this day in 1987, MJ would become the only player other than Wilt to score 3000 points in a season with a 61 point outburst again Nique’s Hawks (on 22-38 (58%) shooting with 10 boards and 4 steals). This was the end of a three game streak where MJ scored 53, 50, and 61 in a row against tough playoff rivals to end the season. Actually, he had one more game to keep the streak alive but MJ figured it was more important to rest half the last game instead of dumping personal points since Bird’s legendary Celtics were coming in the first round. It should be noted that Nique, who dropped 57 against the Bulls earlier that year, probably motivated MJ a tad here. Thanks to Jordanhair for this vid – I also have this vid up on my YouTube channel but Jordanhair’s is more complete with better quality.

This day in Michael Jordan History: 4/13/89

Posted in Basketball with tags on April 13, 2012 by hoopsencyclopedia

Friday the 13th, 1989: Michael Jordan’s statistical tear to end the regular season seems too incredible to believe. With a run of 7 straight triple-doubles and triple-doubles in 12 of his last 16 games to close out the season, Doug Collins’ desire to make MJ a playmaker showed that he was just about as good a playmaker as anyone who ever played the game – if not better. Except he was doing it while scoring 30-40 points at the same time. MJ here gets 47pts on 17-30 shooting (57%), 11 rebounds, 13 assists, 4 steals and 2 blocks in a close loss. Take a trip to MJ in his absolute prime and enjoy. Thanks to Balthus23 for putting this one up.