Forgotten NBA Champions: Revisited
NBA champions have a special place in history. When a team wins an NBA Finals, they not only cement their place in NBA history but history in general. Think for a minute. When you think of the greatest sports teams in history, what teams tend to come to mind? Sure, a few baseball and football teams come to mind, but the majority of teams that come to the general casual sports fans tend to be NBA teams.
Teams like the Chicago Bulls in the 1990s, the Boston Celtics in the 1960s, the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980s, the San Antonio Spurs of the 2000s, or even the Golden State Warriors in the 2010s. We have already discussed some forgotten NBA champions, but there are also three other past champions that tend to get forgotten. Without further adieu, let’s journey back in time and give some respect to these three often forgotten title winners.
Forgotten NBA Champions: Part Two
2004 Detroit Pistons
Everyone knows about the Bad Boy Pistons of the 1980s and 1990s, however, the Pistons of the 2000s deserve more credit. The 2004 Detroit squad to be exact. Not only did they knock off a Los Angeles Lakers team with Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal, Karl Malone, and Gary Payton in five games, they also became one of the few teams to win a title without any All-Stars. Do not get it wrong though, they still had great players who would go on to become stars.
Players like Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton, Rasheed Wallace, and Ben Wallace. The team would finish the season with a win-loss record of 54-28. They also would finish with an extremely impressive defensive rating of 95.4, good for second-best in the league. The Detroit Pistons would start a new physical era in their franchise history and it would start with this often overlooked 2004 title team.
1975 Golden State Warriors
Before the Golden State Warriors were a dynasty, they had a very overlooked title to their resume. In 1975, the Warriors would defeat the Washington Bullets four games to none. Led by Hall of Famer, Rick Barry, the Warriors would finish the regular season with a win-loss record of 48-34, good for first place in the Pacific Division. On top of that, they would also finish with a team defensive rating of 97.3, good for fifth-best in the league.
The Warriors would also finish with an offensive rating of 100.4, good for second-best in the NBA. Despite being relatively underpowered and having only one notable star in Rick Barry, the 1975 Warriors accomplished what many deemed the impossible. It is crazy that they are one of the most forgotten NBA champions.
1973 New York Knicks
Believe it or not, the New York Knicks have not always been the laughing stock of the NBA. During the 1972-73 season, the Mecca of basketball tasted NBA glory. Thanks to the likes of Walt Frazier and Earl Monroe, the Knicks were able to cement their place in NBA immortality. Another interesting tidbit about this team is that Phil Jackson also played on this squad.
They would go on to defeat the Los Angeles Lakers four games to one. The Knicks finished the season with a win-loss record of 57-25. They also finished with an offensive rating of 98.9 and a defensive rating of 92.5. The Knicks may be easy to make fun of now, but their 1972-73 squad was nothing to laugh at. It is crazy that they are one of the forgotten NBA champions.
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