Unique, Inspiring, and Downright Weird Moments from NBA History

It’s mad to think that another NBA season is almost over. Where has the time gone?! However, as we ready ourselves for the championship, it’s always fun to take a look back at some of the most memorable moments in the history of the sport. Some of these moments have been heart-wrenching, some of them have been a true inspiration, and others some of us are, frankly, still struggling to wrap our heads around!

We’ve hand-picked a selection of era-defining moments in basketball, some that go as far back as 1962. So, we’d take the bet that there are a couple of these that you’ve never even heard of. Let’s kick things off with a pivotal moment from the 2008 finals.

The Celtics Even Things Up in Remarkable Style

If you’re following the action closely then you’ll already know that the Boston Celtics have the shortest odds to win the NBA championship at the moment. Although this memorable moment was all the way back in 2008, it’s still times like these that prove to us how explosive and determined the Celtics can be. 

Picture this: the Los Angeles Lakers were leading the game, with a score of 35-14 in the first quarter alone. They lengthened their lead even further in the second quarter, until the Celtics were down a crushing 24 points. Nobody likes to see the points stack up like that, but the Boston Celtics were dogged in their pursuit of a win. They managed a run of 23 for 3 in the second half, taking their total to 97, against the Laker’s 91. 

This moment was particularly poignant not just because it was the single biggest comeback in an NBA final game since 1971, but also because the Celtics had splashed out on three-star players the earlier summer: Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, and Paul Pierce. The gamble paid off, as this effort truly took star power.

Kyle Irving’s Last Minute Three Pointer 

Another memorable moment from one of the NBA finals games came thanks to Kyle Irving. The score was an even 3 between the Cavaliers and the Warriors with just 69 seconds remaining. Both teams had managed a combined total of 12 misses in a row leading up to this point, so the hopes of a winning shot were looking increasingly unlikely. Seeing his moment, Irving seized it. He danced past Stephen Curry and shot from 25 feet. Somehow, it made it through the hoop, with less than a minute to spare.

This shot wouldn’t only win the championship for the Cavaliers, but it would go down in history as ‘the biggest shot in NBA history’ as proclaimed by the Wall Street Journal following the match. There was actually a really interesting piece on the statistics that led the journalist to come to this conclusion. We’d recommend checking it out if you’re into NBA statistics, as rarely does a sports journalist get involved in quite this much math!

Wilt Chamberlain Scores 100 Points in a Single Game

It’s an oldie but a goldie. It’s also one that doesn’t take too much explaining! Wilt Chamberlain had a spectacular NBA career, but the highlight must have come in 1962 when he scored a staggering 100 points in a game against the New York Knicks. This feat would go down in history as the highest single-game score to one player in the history of the NBA. That record stands to this day.

Michael Jordan Seals the Deal with Flu

Can you remember the last time you had the flu? Did you drag yourself off the couch to score 38 points in an NBA final? No? Us neither. However, Michael Jordan did! The game in question was during the 1997 NBA finals and took place between the Chicago Bulls and Utah Jazz. 

Throughout the game, it was clear to see that Jordan was struggling. He would lay on the ground during any pauses in play and lean on fellow players for support. However, he managed to score some decisive points despite his ailments. The photograph of Scottie Pippen helping Jordan off the court afterwards stays one of the most iconic basketball images of all time.

A Brawl to Remember

While there are many moments to remember from NBA history, there are one or two that many try to forget. One such moment was dubbed ‘the malice at the palace’. This nickname was coined after an infamous brawl that broke out between the Indiana Pacers and the Detroit Pistons in 2004. It all kicked off when Ron Artest shoved Ben Wallace. Artest felt that Wallace had handed him a hard foul – so he pushed him. A bit of a scuffle between players ensued (as it often does), but it quickly calmed down and Artest took a time-out to lay down and chill out. However, it was at this moment that things were destined to get heated.

A fan threw a drink over Artest, and it would be fair to say, he lost it. Artest launched himself into the crowd, followed by both the Pistons and the Pacers. The teams collided with the fans, and it took security guards a good few minutes to bring things under control. The game ended up being called short, and the key players involved faced legal ramifications. It wasn’t a golden moment in NBA history, but it was a moment that has helped to shape player-fan interaction right up to the present day.

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