How ‘Winning Time’ 1984 NBA Finals episode compares to reality

How ‘Winning Time’ 1984 NBA Finals episode compares to reality originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

HBO’s Winning Time drama series based on the 1980s “Showtime” Lakers aired its final episode Sunday night as it was canceled after only two seasons.

Ironically, the show about the Lakers dynasty ended with the Boston Celtics coming out on top.

The season two finale covered the epic 1984 NBA Finals featuring Los Angeles and Boston. The seven-game series marked the first of three Finals showdowns between the archrivals in the decade.

The Celtics beat the Lakers in ’84 to improve to 8-0 all-time against L.A. in the Finals. Winning Time covered the top storylines from the series including Larry Bird’s famous “We played like sissies” quote, Kevin McHale’s clothesline of Kurt Rambis, and C’s fans storming the court after Game 7.

Here’s how those moments, and other key storylines in the episode, compared to the real deal.

Game 1 – Did Lakers players really run straight to their bus after beating Boston?

While the Winning Time season two finale does a great job summarizing the best moments from the 1984 NBA Finals, it begins with a fictionalized version of Game 1. The Lakers beat the Celtics in Boston but they did not sprint straight to their bus after their win to avoid the raucous Garden crowd, unlike what was shown in the episode. In fact, they walked off the court and their superstar Kareem Abdul-Jabbar hung around for a postgame interview after notching 32 points and eight rebounds.

Game 2 – Magic’s miscue costs L.A.

The Celtics evened the series at one game apiece thanks in large part to an uncharacteristic Magic Johnson error. Winning Time’s version of events was almost identical to the real thing as it emphasized Johnson losing track of the clock, dribbling for roughly 11 seconds, and not passing to a wide-open Abdul-Jabbar in the paint.

The game went into overtime, where Gerald Henderson’s clutch steal and layup propelled Boston to a 124-121 win.

Game 3 – ‘We played like sissies’

Johnson made up for his Game 2 blunder with a brilliant performance in Game 3 to put the Lakers back up in the series. As shown in the…

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Author : NBC Sports Boston

Publish date : 2023-09-19 00:46:16

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