I just watched an NBA playoff game from the 1995 Eastern Conference Semi-Finals on ESPN Classic. It was the Orlando Magic at the Chicago Bulls, with Orlando having a 3-2 lead in the best of 7 series. This might be best known as the year Jordan returned in the middle of the season from baseball. Bulls lead by 9 late in the 4th quarter and ended up falling apart, including Jordan who had an airball and turnover in the last minute of play. Oh, and Luc Longley, the 7’2″ Australian center of the Bulls, basically airballed a dunk which would have given them the lead with less than 30 seconds to go. I didnt see this game when it originally aired back then, due to either not having cable yet (it was on TBS), or possibly was watching the Suns/Rockets game that was on at the same time on TNT (the kept showing score updates for that game, and I seem to somewhat remember that game).
Anyways, there were quite a few hilarious things occuring in and around this contest and here are some of them: Washington Bullets’ rookie Juwan Howard was in the crowd, wearing a cosby sweater; the commentators talked about how the league was in good shape for whenever the post-Jordan era would start with Grant Hill, Jason Kidd, and Juwan Howard, I guess they were kind of right about Kidd; Penny Hardaway played in the game, and was fully healthy, seriously; Shaq was sporting a fade haircut and weighed about 100 pounds less than he currently does; Horace Grant, who was a Bull during their titles years had defected to the Magic, was wearing perhaps the largest goggles in sports history, and that is in no way hyperbole; Shaq chased a ball into the stands and almost killed a fan who he ran into at full speed; this graphic – baseball next Rockies vs Braves, which would feature the Braves team that actually won the world series later that year, and the only Rockies team that made the playoffs until this year’s team; Chicago Bear’s coach Dave Wannstedt was in the crowd, that worked out well for the Bears, right?; Magic coach Brian Hill’s wife being shown in the crowd, sporting an even better Cosby sweater than Juwon Howard, featuring the following colors – red, purple, and grey pupon gold; the now late film critic Gene Siskel was in the crowd and was really into the game, I mean really into the game; and of course, Luc Longley, who I will always remember as the guy from NBA Live ’95 for Sega Genesis that despite his 7’2″ uncoordinated whiteness was able to nail 3 pointer after 3 pointer, which caused me to lose numerous games against my brother despite the fact that I outplayed him with Glenn “Big Dog” Robinson and the Milwaukee Bucks but still lost because he could just chuck up 3’s with Longley and he would nail them, with a guy in his face.
As always, comments encouraged