There have been some fantastic championship games in the NBA, so many that comparing them all takes weeks! When you go through our list, you might be wondering why one game is higher than the other, but hopefully, our explanations will do the team’s justice! This blog will discuss The 5 Best NBA Championship Matches of All Time.
Before a championship starts, it’s always best to look at previous games of NBA championship matches and how the players fared. That way, when betting on the NBA, you will have a greater scope of knowledge to help you predict the outcomes.
1. San Antonio Spurs vs. Miami Heat – 2013
This top spot position might come as a shock. “What about the Lakers vs. Celtics or the Cavaliers vs. Warriors?” we hear you cry! Don’t worry; they will get their spot on our list too, but we couldn’t ignore the talent, juicy drama, and the luck of chance that this game gives. You couldn’t ask for more in a match!
Tony Parker opened up the game with incredible energy that forced everyone on the court, including his teammates, to up their play.
James and Duncan were already set as rivals for the game, and this prediction came true when James blocked Duncan (and Tiago Splitter) at the rim. The blocks were vicious and showed an almost rude side to James as his passion escaped him.
As the game continued, Spurs should have won. But they slipped up and ran through a bad bounce. Ray Allen raced to the ball with luck on his side, and all was lost for San Antonio!
2. Golden State Warriors vs. Cleveland Cavaliers – 2016
This particular match started with a lot of high hopes for the Golden State Warriors. They were favored to win the whole championship because their regular season showed an immense amount of wins! They ended it with 73 wins in total, which was enough to boost their confidence as well as the fans. The Cleveland Cavaliers weren’t so deterred, though.
Everyone thought the Cavaliers would cave to an easy defeat, but when the first game was over, we all saw that the numbers were surprisingly close.
Shook and angered, the Warriors came back fighting. None were going to take their crown away from them, and in the second half of game one, they sped through to an undeniable victory of 104 – 89.
The games continued in this way, with the first half being evenly fought and the second half dominated by the Warriors.
By the end of the second round, the Cavaliers were looking weak. The Warriors had created a 2 – 0 series advantage. So Cleveland brought out their big guns. James and Irving came onto the court and kicked the Warriors to the ground.
No one had predicted it, but the Cavaliers played the long game and waited for the right time to pull out their best players. With strategy in mind, the Cleveland Cavaliers won.
3. Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics – 1962
This list is compiled of the best NBA championships of all time, so we couldn’t let the games of the 21st century take all the credit! If you watch the highlights from this game, you’ll think you’re watching a whole different sport. The speed is slower, the passes are less precise, and the difference in stamina is noticeable.
As we perfect the game of basketball, all the teams get better, but the best games aren’t necessarily the most skilled. This match was filled with drama, was amazingly talented for its time, and will still get you gripping your seat today.
Players were up against equally intense competition, creating tons of close contests and lots of shocked blocks.
The game became legendary in part 5 when Baylor scored a record-breaking 61 points! This was coupled with 22 rebounds.
4. Los Angeles Lakers vs. Detroit Pistons – 1988
At this point in the NBA, the Lakers looked like they were losing their edge. They were still seen as champions, and being in the finals is no small feat, but the energy and stamina in the players seemed to be drifting away.
In the first 5 games, the teams were almost taking turns to dominate the court. The real game started in Game 6. Thomas had a sprained ankle but was determined to stay on the court, earning him a record of 25 points in the third quarter.
He was basically playing with one leg at this point, but he still managed to finish the game with 43 points to his name. Pushing himself through the injury, eventually, the pain caught up with him. By the halftime whistle of Game 7, he was useless.
5. Boston Celtics vs. Los Angeles Lakers – 1969
After a fierce rivalry just 7 years prior, these two giants made their way back to the NBA finals. Last time the Celtics won, but by this point, the Lakers were gaining momentum. Jerry West became the hero of this story, pushing everything he pulled his team to the win, but unfortunately, it wasn’t enough. His struggle was noticed, though, and this game earned him the 1969 MVP award.