After 16 NBA Championships and 31 Western Conference Titles, the Lakers have been one of the most storied and successful franchises in NBA history. From the eras of West, Chamberlain, Kareem, Magic, and Kobe, there have been countless record-breaking performances and memorable games that have added to Lakers glory. Let’s take a look back at some notable moments for the purple and gold, from the week of May 11-17, over their 66-year history.
May 14, 1996
Magic Johnson announced his official retirement from professional basketball, after returning to the NBA to play 32 regular season and four playoff games, following a four-year hiatus from the league.
May 15, 1982
The Lakers swept the Spurs and advanced to the NBA Finals with a 128-123 win in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals. The victory made the Lakers the first team in NBA playoff history to sweep back-to-back best-of-7 series.
May 15, 1984
Magic Johnson set a playoff record with 24 assists when the Lakers defeated the Phoenix Suns 118-102 in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals. John Stockton of the Utah Jazz eventually tied Johnson’s record in 1988.
May 15, 1995
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Abdul-Jabbar was the NBA’s all-time leader in points scored, games played, minutes played, field goals made, field goal attempts, blocked shots, defensive rebounds, and personal fouls at the time of his retirement in 1989.
May 16, 1980
During his rookie season, Magic Johnson filled in at center for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in Game 6 of the NBA Finals. Johnson scored 42 points and collected 15 rebounds for the Lakers in the title-clinching game. Johnson made all 14 of his free throw attempts, which set an NBA Finals record. He was named the Finals MVP, and his 42 points are the most-ever scored by a rookie in an NBA Finals game.