Thursday, April 19, 2012

1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers

1971–72 Los Angeles Lakers season
Sixth NBA Championship
Head coach Bill Sharman
Owner(s) Jack Kent Cooke
Arena The Forum
Results
Record 69–13 (.841)
Place Division: 1st (Pacific)
Conference: 1st (Western)
Playoff finish NBA Champions
Local media
Television KTLA
Radio KABC

Pos. Starter Bench Reserve Inactive
C Wilt Chamberlain LeRoy Ellis
PF Happy Hairston John Trapp
SF Jim McMillian Pat Riley Keith Erickson
SG Jerry West Jim Cleamons
PG Gail Goodrich Flynn Robinson

Player GP MPG FG% FT% RPG APG PPG
Elgin Baylor 9 26.6 .433 .815 6.3 2.0 11.8
Wilt Chamberlain 82 42.3 .649 .422 19.2 4.0 14.8
Jim Cleamons 38 5.3 .350 .778 1.0 0.9 2.6
LeRoy Ellis 74 14.6 .460 .695 4.2 0.6 4.6
Keith Erickson 15 17.5 .482 .857 2.6 2.3 5.7
Gail Goodrich 82 37.1 .487 .850 3.6 4.5 25.9
Happy Hairston 80 34.4 .461 .779 13.1 2.4 13.1
Jim McMillian 80 38.1 .482 .791 6.5 2.6 18.8
Pat Riley 67 13.8 .447 .743 1.9 1.1 6.7
Flynn Robinson 64 15.7 .490 .860 1.8 2.2 9.9
John Trapp 58 13.1 .443 .699 3.1 0.7 5.7
Jerry West 77 38.6 .477 .814 4.2 9.7 25.8

Game 1

Although without Willis Reed because of his knee injury. Jerry Lucas scored 26 points but was only one of several Knicks who was red hot. Bill Bradley hit 11 of 12 shots from the field as New York shot 53 percent for the game. The team took advantage of a nearly perfect first half to jump to a good lead and won easily, 114-92. Early in the second half, the Forum crowd began filing out dejectedly. It looked like another Los Angeles fold in the Finals.

Game 2

Knicks forward Dave DeBusschere hurt his side and didn't play after the first half. Hairston scored 12 points in the second half, and Los Angeles evened the series with a 106-92 win.

Game 3

DeBusschere attempted to play in the first half and missed all six of his field-goal attempts. He was hurting and elected not to play in the second half. DeBusschere explained :"I didn't feel I was helping the team,". The Lakers danced out to a 22-point lead and regained the home-court advantage with a 107-96 win.

Game 4

The game went into overtime, but at the end of regulation, Wilt Chamberlain picked up his fifth foul. In 13 NBA seasons, he had never fouled out of a game, a statistic of which he was immensely proud. Immediately speculation started along press row that he would play soft in the overtime. Instead, he came out in a shotblocking fury that propelled the Lakers to a 116-111 win. At three games to one, their lead now seemed insurmountable.

Game 5

The Lakers won their sixth NBA championship by the score of 114-100. This was their first championship since moving to Los Angeles in 1960. Jerry West also won his first NBA championship after 12 years of waiting. Wilt Chamberlain scored 24 points and 29 rebounds and earned the NBA Finals MVP Award.

Award winners

Bill Sharman, NBA Coach of the Year
Jerry West, All-NBA First Team
Jerry West, All-NBA Defensive First Team
Wilt Chamberlain, All-NBA Defensive First Team
Wilt Chamberlain, NBA Leader, Shooting Percentage (.649

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