1986–87 NBA season

The 1986–87 NBA season was the 41st season of the National Basketball Association. The season ended with the Los Angeles Lakers winning their fourth championship of the decade, beating the Boston Celtics 4 games to 2 in the NBA Finals.

1986–87 NBA season
LeagueNational Basketball Association
SportBasketball
DurationOct 31, 1986 – Apr 19, 1987
Apr 23 – May 30, 1987 (Playoffs)
Jun 2–14, 1987 (Finals)
Number of teams23
TV partner(s)CBS, TBS
Draft
Top draft pickBrad Daugherty
Picked byCleveland Cavaliers
Regular season
Top seedLos Angeles Lakers
Season MVPMagic Johnson (L.A. Lakers)
Top scorerMichael Jordan (Chicago)
Playoffs
Eastern championsBoston Celtics
  Eastern runners-upDetroit Pistons
Western championsLos Angeles Lakers
  Western runners-upSeattle SuperSonics
Finals
ChampionsLos Angeles Lakers
  Runners-upBoston Celtics
Finals MVPMagic Johnson (L.A. Lakers)

Notable occurrences

Coaching changes
Offseason
Team 1985–86 coach 1986–87 coach
San Antonio Spurs Cotton Fitzsimmons Bob Weiss
Portland Trail Blazers Jack Ramsay Mike Schuler
Chicago Bulls Stan Albeck Doug Collins
Cleveland Cavaliers Gene Littles Lenny Wilkens
Indiana Pacers George Irvine Jack Ramsay
Golden State Warriors Johnny Bach George Karl
In-season
Team Outgoing coach Incoming coach
New York Knicks Hubie Brown Bob Hill
Phoenix Suns John MacLeod Dick Van Arsdale
Sacramento Kings Phil Johnson Jerry Reynolds

Final standings

By division

Atlantic Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Boston Celtics 59 23 .720 39–2 20–21 15–9
x-Philadelphia 76ers 45 37 .549 14 28–13 17–24 12–12
x-Washington Bullets 42 40 .512 17 27–14 15–26 13–11
New Jersey Nets 24 58 .293 35 19–22 5–36 12–12
New York Knicks 24 58 .293 35 18–23 6–35 8–16
Central Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Atlanta Hawks 57 25 .695 35–6 22–19 17–13
x-Detroit Pistons 52 30 .634 5 32–9 20–21 17–13
x-Milwaukee Bucks 50 32 .610 7 32–9 18–23 17–13
x-Indiana Pacers 41 41 .500 16 28–13 13–28 13–16
x-Chicago Bulls 40 42 .488 17 29–12 11–30 17–12
Cleveland Cavaliers 31 51 .378 26 25–16 6–35 8–22
Midwest Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Dallas Mavericks 55 27 .671 35–6 20–21 19–11
x-Utah Jazz 44 38 .537 11 31–10 13–28 19–11
x-Houston Rockets 42 40 .512 13 25–16 17–24 19–11
x-Denver Nuggets 37 45 .451 18 27–14 10–31 14–16
Sacramento Kings 29 53 .354 26 20–21 9–32 10–20
San Antonio Spurs 28 54 .341 27 21–20 7–34 9–21
Pacific Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Los Angeles Lakers 65 17 .793 37–4 28–13 24–6
x-Portland Trail Blazers 49 33 .598 16 34–7 15–26 17–13
x-Golden State Warriors 42 40 .512 23 25–16 17–24 17–13
x-Seattle SuperSonics 39 43 .476 26 25–16 14–27 15–15
Phoenix Suns 36 46 .439 29 26–15 10–31 14–16
Los Angeles Clippers 12 70 .146 53 9–32 3–38 3–27

By conference

# Eastern Conference
Team W L PCT GB
1 c-Boston Celtics 59 23 .720
2 y-Atlanta Hawks 57 25 .695 2
3 x-Detroit Pistons 52 30 .634 7
4 x-Milwaukee Bucks 50 32 .610 9
5 x-Philadelphia 76ers 45 37 .549 14
6 x-Washington Bullets 42 40 .512 17
7 x-Indiana Pacers 41 41 .500 18
8 x-Chicago Bulls 40 42 .488 19
9 Cleveland Cavaliers 31 51 .378 28
10 New Jersey Nets 24 58 .293 35
11 New York Knicks 24 58 .293 35
# Western Conference
Team W L PCT GB
1 z-Los Angeles Lakers 65 17 .793
2 y-Dallas Mavericks 55 27 .671 10
3 x-Portland Trail Blazers 49 33 .598 16
4 x-Utah Jazz 44 38 .537 21
5 x-Golden State Warriors 42 40 .512 23
6 x-Houston Rockets 42 40 .512 23
7 x-Seattle SuperSonics 39 43 .476 26
8 x-Denver Nuggets 37 45 .451 28
9 Phoenix Suns 36 46 .439 29
10 Sacramento Kings 29 53 .354 36
11 San Antonio Spurs 28 54 .341 37
12 Los Angeles Clippers 12 70 .146 53


Notes

  • z – Clinched home court advantage for the entire playoffs
  • c – Clinched home court advantage for the conference playoffs
  • y – Clinched division title
  • x – Clinched playoff spot

Playoffs

Teams in bold advanced to the next round. The numbers to the left of each team indicate the team's seeding in its conference, and the numbers to the right indicate the number of games the team won in that round. The division champions are marked by an asterisk. Home court advantage does not necessarily belong to the higher-seeded team, but instead the team with the better regular season record; teams enjoying the home advantage are shown in italics.

First round Conf. Semifinals Conf. Finals NBA Finals
            
1 L.A. Lakers 3
8 Denver 0
1 L.A. Lakers 4
5 Golden State 1
4 Utah 2
5 Golden State 3
1 L.A. Lakers 4
Western Conference
7 Seattle 0
3 Portland 1
6 Houston 3
6 Houston 2
7 Seattle 4
2 Dallas 1
7 Seattle 3
W1 L.A. Lakers 4
E1 Boston 2
1 Boston 3
8 Chicago 0
1 Boston 4
4 Milwaukee 3
4 Milwaukee 3
5 Philadelphia 2
1 Boston 4
Eastern Conference
3 Detroit 3
3 Detroit 3
6 Washington 0
3 Detroit 4
2 Atlanta 1
2 Atlanta 3
7 Indiana 1

Statistics leaders

Category Player Team Stat
Points per game Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls 37.1
Rebounds per game Charles Barkley Philadelphia 76ers 14.6
Assists per game Magic Johnson Los Angeles Lakers 12.2
Steals per game Alvin Robertson San Antonio Spurs 3.21
Blocks per game Mark Eaton Utah Jazz 4.06
FG% Kevin McHale Boston Celtics .604
FT% Larry Bird Boston Celtics .910
3FG% Kiki Vandeweghe Portland Trail Blazers .481

NBA awards

Yearly awards

Note: All above information were obtained on the History section on NBA.com

Player of the week

The following players were named NBA Player of the Week.

Week Player
October 31 – November 9 Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls)
November 10 – November 16 Robert Parish (Boston Celtics)
November 17 – November 23 Alvin Robertson (San Antonio Spurs)
November 24 – November 30 Hot Rod Williams (Cleveland Cavaliers)
December 1 – December 7 Tom Chambers (Seattle SuperSonics)
December 8 – December 14 Dominique Wilkins (Atlanta Hawks)
December 15 – December 21 Magic Johnson (Los Angeles Lakers)
December 22 – December 28 Patrick Ewing (New York Knicks)
December 29 – January 4 Larry Bird (Boston Celtics)
January 5 – January 11 Isiah Thomas (Detroit Pistons)
January 12 – January 19 Otis Thorpe (Sacramento Kings)
January 20 – January 26 Alex English (Denver Nuggets)
January 27 – February 1 Fat Lever (Denver Nuggets)
February 2 – February 15 Magic Johnson (Los Angeles Lakers)
February 16 – February 22 Moses Malone (Washington Bullets)
February 23 – March 1 Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls)
March 2 – March 8 Magic Johnson (Los Angeles Lakers)
March 9 – March 15 Karl Malone (Utah Jazz)
March 16 – March 22 Magic Johnson (Los Angeles Lakers)
March 23 – March 29 Larry Smith (Golden State Warriors)
March 30 – April 5 Magic Johnson (Los Angeles Lakers)
April 6 – April 12 Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls)
April 13 – April 15 Julius Erving (Philadelphia 76ers)

Player of the month

The following players were named NBA Player of the Month.

Month Player
November Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls)
December Magic Johnson (Los Angeles Lakers)
January Charles Barkley (Philadelphia 76ers)
February Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls)
March Magic Johnson (Los Angeles Lakers)

Rookie of the month

The following players were named NBA Rookie of the Month.

Month Rookie
November Chuck Person (Indiana Pacers)
December Ron Harper (Cleveland Cavaliers)
January Ron Harper (Cleveland Cavaliers)
February Chuck Person (Indiana Pacers)
March Brad Daugherty (Cleveland Cavaliers)

Coach of the month

The following coaches were named NBA Coach of the Month.

Month Coach
November Pat Riley (Los Angeles Lakers)
December Frank Layden (Utah Jazz)
January Bill Fitch (Houston Rockets)
February Mike Schuler (Portland Trail Blazers)
March George Karl (Golden State Warriors)

References

  1. ^ AP. "3 SUNS PLAYERS ARE INDICTED IN DRUG INVESTIGATION". nytimes.com. Archived from the original on 6 November 2017. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  2. ^ Services, From Times Wire (9 May 1987). "More NBA Players Linked to Arizona Drug/Gambling Probe". Archived from the original on 17 November 2015. Retrieved 5 May 2018 – via LA Times.
  3. ^ "Twin Towers On The Rise". Sports Illustrated. 65 (18). November 3, 1986. Retrieved October 8, 2013.
  4. ^ "NBA Playoffs : Hot Sonics Beat Rockets in Overtime, 111-106". Los Angeles Times. Times Wire Services. May 3, 1987. Archived from the original on June 10, 2015. Retrieved October 8, 2013.
  5. ^ "N.B.A. Playoffs; Mavericks Eliminated By Sonics". New York Times. Associated Press. May 1, 1987. Archived from the original on May 24, 2015. Retrieved October 8, 2013.
1986 NBA draft

The 1986 NBA draft was held on June 17, 1986.

1986–87 Atlanta Hawks season

The 1986–87 NBA season was the Hawks' 38th season in the NBA and their 19th season in the city of Atlanta. The Hawks finished first place in the Central Division with a franchise-best record of 57–25. Dominique Wilkins made the All-NBA Second Team, and was selected for the 1987 NBA All-Star Game. In the first round of the playoffs, the Hawks defeated the Indiana Pacers in four games, but lost in five games to the 3rd-seeded Detroit Pistons in the semifinals.

1986–87 Chicago Bulls season

The 1986–87 Chicago Bulls season was the 21st season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

1986–87 Dallas Mavericks season

The 1986–87 NBA season was the Mavericks' 7th season in the NBA.After winning Game 1 in a high-scoring affair, the underdog Seattle SuperSonics took the next three games, ending the Mavericks season.

The season saw the team draft Roy Tarpley and Mark Price. However, Price would be traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers after refusing to report to Dallas.

1986–87 Denver Nuggets season

The 1986-87 NBA season was the Nuggets' 11th season in the NBA and 20th season as a franchise.In the playoffs, the Nuggets were swept by the eventual NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers in three games in the First Round.

1986–87 Detroit Pistons season

The 1986-87 NBA season was the Pistons' 39th season in the NBA and 30th season in the city of Detroit.After drafting John Salley and Dennis Rodman, the team earned the nickname "Bad Boys" because of their physical style of play.

1986–87 Golden State Warriors season

The 1986–87 NBA season was the Warriors' 41st season in the NBA and 24th in the San Francisco Bay Area.\

In the playoffs, the Warriors defeated the Utah Jazz in five games in the First Round, before losing to the eventual NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers in five games in the Semifinals.

1986–87 Indiana Pacers season

The 1986-87 NBA season was Indiana's 11th season in the NBA and 20th season as a franchise.

1986–87 Los Angeles Lakers season

The 1986–87 Los Angeles Lakers season was the 41st season of the franchise, 39th in the National Basketball Association (NBA) and 27th in Los Angeles. Coming from a shocking defeat to the Houston Rockets in the previous season's Western Conference Finals in five games, where they won the first game, but proceeded to drop the next four, the Lakers avenged their playoff upset by making the NBA Finals for the sixth time in the 1980s. Prior to reaching the NBA Finals, in the playoffs, the Lakers swept the 1986-87 Denver Nuggets in three games in the First Round, defeated the Golden State Warriors in five games in the Semifinals, and swept the Seattle SuperSonics in four games in the Conference Finals.

The highlight of the season saw the Lakers winning the NBA Finals, and their tenth NBA title over the defending NBA champions and rivals, the Boston Celtics, in six games. This marked the third and final time the Lakers and Celtics faced off against each other in the NBA Finals in the 1980s, as well as the last time the Lakers and Celtics faced off against each other in the NBA Finals until 2008, where the Celtics defeated the Lakers 4–2 to win their 17th NBA championship. The two teams would then meet again in 2010, where the Lakers defeated the Celtics 4–3 to win their 16th NBA championship.

1986–87 Milwaukee Bucks season

The 1986-87 NBA season was the Bucks' 19th season in the NBA. For the first time since 1979-80, the Bucks did not win their division.

During the season, coach and general manager Don Nelson started to experience a rift in friendship with Bucks owner Herb Kohl due to personal disagreements with Kohl on how to run the team. During Game 4 of the 1987 Eastern Conference Semifinals between the Bucks and the Boston Celtics, Nelson controversially announced to the local and national sports media that he did not expect to return to the Bucks after the season was over due to said rift with Kohl. Nelson would in fact resign after the Bucks lost the series to Boston in seven games, coming back from being down 3-1 in the series only to lose the seventh and deciding game in Boston Garden. After 11 seasons coaching and managing the Bucks, Nelson took the year off only to return in the 1988-89 season as coach and manager of the Golden State Warriors. The Bucks hired Nelson's assistant coach, Del Harris, to take over the team for the 1987-88 season.

1986–87 New York Knicks season

The 1986-87 NBA season was the Knicks' 41st season in the NBA.With second-year center Patrick Ewing still struggling with injuries and after starting the season 4-12, head coach Hubie Brown was fired and Bob Hill took over for the rest of the season. Brown returned to coach the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2002-03 season.

1986–87 Philadelphia 76ers season

The 1986-87 NBA season was the 76ers 38th season in the NBA and 24th season in Philadelphia. In the 1986 Draft, the Sixers made two trades that would cloud the franchise for over a decade. The Sixers traded the Number 1 overall pick to the Cleveland Cavaliers (who used this selection to draft Brad Daugherty), for Roy Hinson and cash. And in one of the worst trades ever, then traded Moses Malone, Terry Catledge, and two first round draft picks to the Washington Bullets for Jeff Ruland and Cliff Robinson.

Brad Daugherty would have multiple All-Star selections with the Cavs, while Hinson was dealt away after having a short, unremarkable career (less than 1 and 1/2 years) in Philadelphia. Malone would go to the 1987 NBA All Star game, and Jeff Ruland played in a total of 5 games that season, before sustaining an injury that would keep him out of the NBA until a short stint with the Sixers in the 1992 season.

These two trades were so devastating in that, with the exception of the 2001 season in which they won the Eastern Conference Championship, they have not been considered an elite franchise since, after being one for a period from 1977 to that point. They have won just two division titles after this trade (1990, 2001), and in a span of 31 seasons through 2017 these were the only two seasons in which the team registered more than 50 regular season wins (53, 1990; 56, 2001). Also, over a span of 16 seasons (2002 to 2017), they had only one season in which the team finished the regular season at more than 4 games over the .500 mark (2003; 48-34.)

The Sixers would finish nine games worse than the previous season at 45-37, and lose in the first round of the playoffs to the Milwaukee Bucks. This would be the 16th and final season for Julius Erving, who in his last regular season home game, became just the third player in ABA-NBA history to score over 30,000 points for a career. Each road city had a farewell ceremony to honor him.

1986–87 Sacramento Kings season

The 1986-87 NBA season was the Kings' 38th season in the NBA and second in Sacramento.

1986–87 San Antonio Spurs season

The 1986-87 NBA season was the Spurs' 11th season in the NBA and 20th season as a franchise.

1986–87 Utah Jazz season

The 1986–87 Utah Jazz season was the team's 13th in the NBA. They began the season hoping to improve upon their 42–40 output from the previous season. They bested it by two wins, finishing 44–38 and qualified for the playoffs for the fourth straight season.

1986–87 Washington Bullets season

The 1986–87 NBA season was the Bullets 26th season in the NBA and their 14th season in the city of Washington, D.C..

1987 NBA All-Star Game

The 37th National Basketball Association All-Star Game was played on February 8, 1987, at Seattle's Kingdome. Seattle SuperSonics power forward Tom Chambers was the game's MVP.

The Eastern Conference team consisted of the Washington Bullets' Moses Malone and Jeff Malone, the Philadelphia 76ers' Julius Erving, Maurice Cheeks and Charles Barkley, the Boston Celtics' Larry Bird, Robert Parish and Kevin McHale, the Detroit Pistons' Isiah Thomas and Bill Laimbeer, the Atlanta Hawks' Dominique Wilkins and the Chicago Bulls' Michael Jordan.

In addition to game MVP Tom Chambers, the Western Conference team featured the Los Angeles Lakers' Magic Johnson, James Worthy and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the Golden State Warriors' Sleepy Floyd and Joe Barry Carroll, the Dallas Mavericks' Rolando Blackman and Mark Aguirre, the San Antonio Spurs' Alvin Robertson, the Phoenix Suns' Walter Davis, the Denver Nuggets' Alex English and the Houston Rockets' Akeem Olajuwon. Houston's Ralph Sampson was selected but unable to play due to injury.

The coach of the Eastern team was Boston's K.C. Jones. The coach of the Western team was the Lakers' Pat Riley.

Ken Mauer

Ken Mauer Jr. (born April 23, 1955 in St. Paul, Minnesota) is an official in the National Basketball Association (NBA) since the 1986–87 NBA season. As of the beginning of the 2017–18 NBA season, Mauer has officiated in 1,717 regular season and 199 playoff games. Mauer wears uniform number 41.

List of 1986–87 NBA season transactions

This is a list of all transactions occurring in the 1986-87 NBA season.

1940s
1950s
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1970s
1980s
1990s
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2010s
2020s
1986–87 NBA season by team
Eastern
Western

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