The 1968 NBA playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 1967-68 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Division champion Boston Celtics defeating the Western Division champion Los Angeles Lakers 4 games to 2 in the NBA Finals.
In the Eastern Division Finals, the Celtics became the first team in NBA history to rally from a 3-1 series deficit to win, as they knocked off the defending champion 76ers in 7. In the West, the Lakers swept the Warriors in 4 games.
|1968 NBA playoffs|
|Dates||March 22–May 2, 1968|
|Champions||Boston Celtics (10th title)|
|Runners-up||Los Angeles Lakers (11th finals appearance)|
|Division Semifinals||Division Finals||NBA Finals|
Champion: Los Angeles Lakers
Last Playoff Meeting: 1967 Western Division Finals (San Francisco won 4-2)
This is the first playoff meeting between the Lakers and Bulls.
Last Playoff Meeting: 1967 Western Division Semifinals (San Francisco won 3-0)
Champion: Boston Celtics
Last Playoff Meeting: 1959 Eastern Division Semifinals (Syracuse, the predecessor to Philadelphia, won 3-2)
This is the first playoff meeting between the Celtics and the Pistons.
Last Playoff Meeting: 1967 Eastern Division Finals (Philadelphia won 4-1)
Last Playoff Meeting: 1966 NBA Finals (Boston won 4-3)
The 1968 NBA World Championship Series pitted the Boston Celtics from the East, against the Los Angeles Lakers from the West, for the sixth time in ten years. The Celtics won their tenth NBA Championship in twelve seasons, by defeating the Lakers in six games. Significantly, Game 6 of the 1968 NBA Finals marked the first time that any NBA competition had taken place during the month of May.1972–73 Philadelphia 76ers season
The 1972–73 Philadelphia 76ers season was their 24th season in the NBA and tenth in Philadelphia. Coming off a 30–52 record in the previous season, the 76ers lost their first 15 games of the season and a few months later set a then-record 20 game losing streak in a single season.
Their record following the 20 game losing streak was 4–58, and the team at that point had just lost 34 of 35 games. The 76ers finished the season with a 9–73 record, earning the nickname from the skeptical Philadelphia media of the "Nine and 73-ers." The 76ers finished an NBA-record 59 games behind the Atlantic Division champion Boston Celtics. The nine wins by the 1972–73 squad is the fourth fewest in NBA history—to the six games won by the Providence Steamrollers in the 48-game 1947–48 season, the seven games won by the Charlotte Bobcats in the lockout-shortened 66-game 2011–12 season, and the eight games won by the Vancouver Grizzlies in the lockout-shortened 50-game 1998–99 season.The 73 losses, although threatened many times (including by the 2015–16 Sixers, who themselves lost 72 that season), remains the all-time low-water mark for any NBA franchise. The 76ers .110 winning percentage was the all-time worst mark in the NBA until the 2011–12 Charlotte Bobcats finished with a .106 winning percentage, whilst their −12.1 points per game point differential has been underdone only by the 2011–12 Bobcats (−13.9 points per game) and the 1992–93 Dallas Mavericks (−15.2 points per game). Only six seasons earlier, the 76ers had set the NBA record for most wins in a season and the highest winning percentage.Jerry West
Jerome Alan West (born May 28, 1938) is an American basketball executive and former player who played professionally for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). His nicknames included Mr. Clutch, for his ability to make a big play in a clutch situation, such as his famous buzzer-beating 60-foot shot that tied Game 3 of the 1970 NBA Finals against the New York Knicks; The Logo, in reference to his silhouette being incorporated into the NBA logo; Mr. Outside, in reference to his perimeter play with the Los Angeles Lakers; and Zeke from Cabin Creek, for the creek near his birthplace of Chelyan, West Virginia. West played the small forward position early in his career, and he was a standout at East Bank High School and at West Virginia University, where he led the Mountaineers to the 1959 NCAA championship game. He earned the NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player honor despite the loss. He then embarked on a 14-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, and was the co-captain of the 1960 U.S. Olympic gold medal team, a squad that was inducted as a unit into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2010.
West's NBA career was highly successful. Playing the guard position, he was voted 12 times into the All-NBA First and Second Teams, was elected into the NBA All-Star Team 14 times, and was chosen as the All-Star MVP in 1972, the same year that he won the only title of his career. West holds the NBA record for the highest points per game average in a playoff series with 46.3. He was also a member of the first five NBA All-Defensive Teams (one second, followed by four firsts), which were introduced when he was 32 years old. Having played in nine NBA Finals, he is also the only player in NBA history to be named Finals MVP despite being on the losing team (1969). West was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 1980 and voted as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA history in 1996.
After his playing career ended, West took over as head coach of the Lakers for three years. He led Los Angeles into the playoffs each year and earned a Western Conference Finals berth once. Working as a player-scout for three years, West was named general manager of the Lakers prior to the 1982–83 NBA season. Under his reign, Los Angeles won six championship rings. In 2002, West became general manager of the Memphis Grizzlies and helped the franchise win their first-ever playoff berths. For his contributions, West won the NBA Executive of the Year Award twice, once as a Lakers manager (1995) and then as a Grizzlies manager (2004). West's son, Jonnie, played college basketball for West Virginia.Wilt Chamberlain
Wilton Norman Chamberlain (; August 21, 1936 – October 12, 1999) was an American basketball player who played as a center and is considered one of the greatest players in history. He played for the Philadelphia/San Francisco Warriors, the Philadelphia 76ers, and the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played for the University of Kansas and also for the Harlem Globetrotters before playing in the NBA. Chamberlain stood 7 ft 1 in (2.16 m) tall, and weighed 250 pounds (110 kg) as a rookie before bulking up to 275 and eventually to over 300 pounds (140 kg) with the Lakers.
Chamberlain holds numerous NBA records in scoring, rebounding, and durability categories. He is the only player to score 100 points in a single NBA game or average more than 40 and 50 points in a season. He won seven scoring, eleven rebounding, nine field goal percentage titles and led the league in assists once. Chamberlain is the only player in NBA history to average at least 30 points and 20 rebounds per game in a season, which he accomplished seven times. He is also the only player to average at least 30 points and 20 rebounds per game over the entire course of his NBA career. Although he suffered a long string of losses in the playoffs, Chamberlain had a successful career, winning two NBA championships, earning four regular-season Most Valuable Player awards, the Rookie of the Year award, one NBA Finals MVP award, and was selected to 13 All-Star Games and ten All-NBA First and Second teams. He was subsequently enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1978, elected into the NBA's 35th Anniversary Team of 1980, and in 1996 he was chosen as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History.Chamberlain was known by several nicknames during his basketball playing career. He hated the ones that called attention to his height, such as "Goliath" and "Wilt the Stilt". A Philadelphia sportswriter coined the nicknames during Chamberlain's high school days. He preferred "The Big Dipper", which was inspired by his friends who saw him dip his head as he walked through doorways. After his professional basketball career ended, Chamberlain played volleyball in the short-lived International Volleyball Association, was president of that organization, and is enshrined in the IVA Hall of Fame for his contributions. He was a successful businessman, authored several books, and appeared in the movie Conan the Destroyer. He was a lifelong bachelor and became notorious for his claim of having had sexual relations with as many as 20,000 women.