2001 NBA Finals
(Los Angeles Lakers)
|Announcers||Marv Albert and Doug Collins|
|Announcers||Brent Musburger and Jack Ramsay|
|Hall of Famers||
Dikembe Mutombo (2015)
Larry Brown (2002)
Phil Jackson (2007)
Tex Winter (2011)
Dick Bavetta (2015)
|Eastern Finals||76ers defeat Bucks, 4-3|
|Western Finals||Lakers defeat Spurs, 4-0|
The 2001 NBA Finals was the championship round of the 2000-01 National Basketball Association season. The Los Angeles Lakers of the Western Conference took on the Philadelphia 76ers of the Eastern Conference for the title, with the Lakers holding home court advantage in a best-of-seven format.
Allen Iverson scored 48 points in his only NBA finals victory, as the Sixers took Game 1 in a stunning upset 107-101 in OT, handing the Lakers their first loss of the postseason. However, the Lakers went on to win the next four games, despite being outshot and outrebounded in the series. L.A. punished the Sixers with their excellent 3-point shooting which was the key to this series. In Game 3 Robert Horry hit a clutch 3-pointer in the last minute, and in the next two games the Lakers used hot 3-point shooting to build big leads and hold off late Sixer comebacks in Games 4 and 5, pulling away for double digit wins to capture the title.
The Los Angeles Lakers entered the 2000–01 NBA season as the defending NBA Champions. The club lost a few key stars to free agency, but they managed to sign up key veteran players like Isaiah Rider and Horace Grant. The Lakers began the season struggling on and off the court, as they were losing key games at the beginning with the Shaq–Kobe feud. Injuries also riddled the team as they struggled through the season. But by April 1, 2001, the Lakers last loss was to the New York Knicks and they never looked back as the team closed out the season on an eight-game winning streak, thus finishing the season 56-26 and closing out as the #2 seed in the West behind the San Antonio Spurs.
The Lakers began the 2001 NBA Playoffs versus the team against whom they played the previous year in the Conference Finals, the Portland Trail Blazers. The Blazers were a team that struggled throughout the season but battled back to claim the 7th seed. The series wasn't close as the Lakers swept the Blazers by double digits in all three games. In the semifinals the Lakers took on the Sacramento Kings, a team who had also given the Lakers a tough series the previous season, but the Lakers took two close games at home and went to Sacramento to finish the Kings off with a 4-0 sweep as well. In the Conference Finals the Lakers went up against the #1 seed San Antonio Spurs, who were expected to be more competitive than the Laker's previous opponents. But it was still all too easy for the Lakers as they took games 1 and 2 in San Antonio then blew them out in games 3 and 4 in Los Angeles in another complete sweep as they became the second team in NBA history to sweep the conference playoffs at 11-0, the 1988-1989 Los Angeles Lakers being the first.
But the Los Angeles Lakers met a snag on their quest to the first NBA sweep in playoff history as they went up against Allen Iverson and the Philadelphia Sixers. The Sixers, seeded #1 in the East, had just come out of two straight seven-game series. During the first game, the trio of Iverson, Dikembe Mutumbo and Eric Snow, coming hot off a long Eastern Conference championship road, beat the Lakers in overtime, showcasing their endurance.
The Lakers then took Game 2. Afterwards, Kobe Bryant was quoted as saying he was coming to Philadelphia to cut their hearts out. The Sixers dropped all three games in Philadelphia, giving the Lakers their second straight championship.
Road to the Finals
|Los Angeles Lakers (Western Conference Champion)||Philadelphia 76ers (Eastern Conference Champion)|
2nd seed in the West, 2nd best league record
1st seed in the East, 3rd best league record
|Defeated the (7) Portland Trail Blazers, 3-0||First Round||Defeated the (8) Indiana Pacers, 3–1|
|Defeated the (3) Sacramento Kings, 4–0||Conference Semifinals||Defeated the (5) Toronto Raptors, 4–3|
|Defeated the (1) San Antonio Spurs, 4–0||Conference Finals||Defeated the (2) Milwaukee Bucks, 4–3|
Regular season series
Both teams split the two meetings, each won by the home team:
December 5, 2000
|Philadelphia 76ers 85, Los Angeles Lakers 96|
February 14, 2001
|Los Angeles Lakers 97, Philadelphia 76ers 112|
Series scoring summary
The following scoring summary is written in a line score format, except that the quarter numbers are replaced by game numbers.
|Team||Game 1*||Game 2||Game 3||Game 4||Game 5||Wins|
|Los Angeles (West)||101||98||96||100||108||4|
- *denotes a game that required overtime.
2001 NBA Finals rosters
2001 Los Angeles Lakers
2001 Philadelphia 76ers