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D_Rose1118
02-01-2014, 03:14 PM
For an individual player what are the greatest "make or break" playoff runs/game in regards to their legacy

Some you definitely have to include
Jordan 1991 vs the pistons
Fresh off 3 consecutive seasons of losing to Isiah and the bad boys, Jordan had to win in 1991 or else he would further proven to the critics that while MJ might be the greatest individual player he could not win against a team. The bulls swept the pistons and the rest is history.

Lebron game 6 vs boston
After the whole cavalier fiasco and lebron not showing up in the previous years finals, imagine if lebron blew that series to the celtics. If he didn't even return to the finals after embarrassing himself. Can you imagine the mental toll that would have taken on him, especially after turning into Americas favorite villain who was too mentally weak to win. Lebron ends up dropping a cool 45 and wins the finals the next month

Barkley game 7 1993 WCF
This is the game that sparked the thought to start this thread, the suns were the best regular season team in the nba that year. Locking up home court throughout the playoffs. Barkley was the league mvp, taking the award away from MJ and had to prove himself,especially after forcing his way out of philly the year prior. It came down to a game 7 vs the young sonics with payton and kemp, barkley dropped 44 and 24 and locked up a date with destiny, unfortunately Jordan wasn't having any of that and averaged 40 a game and won in 6. Winning all 3 games in Phoenix.

What are some others you can think of? You could do it the other way too, players who didn't show up in a career defining game for example Karl Malone in game 1 of the 1997 finals

Also if this turns into a Kobe/lebron thread I'm out

Cal827
02-01-2014, 03:27 PM
Paul Pierce vs Cleveland 2008. The formation of the "Super Team" in the 2007-2008 Season, put the Pierce/Allen/Garnett Celtics as the 1 seed in the League and with 66 wins. For some odd reason, the Celtics struggled in their first two rounds, just getting by 37-45 Hawks in 7 Games. In the second Round, Lebron and the Cavs also pushed them to the limit.

If the Celtics had lost that game, then it would make people question superteams altogether. In that final Game. It didn't help them that Lebron had come to play, putting up 45 points on his own. But his dominance was met with an answer, as Paul Pierce went off too, scoring 41 and shutting down Lebron towards the end of the game, leading the Celtics on to the Conference Finals and eventually an NBA title.

D_Rose1118
02-01-2014, 03:33 PM
Paul Pierce vs Cleveland 2008. The formation of the "Super Team" in the 2007-2008 Season, put the Pierce/Allen/Garnett Celtics as the 1 seed in the League and with 66 wins. For some odd reason, the Celtics struggled in their first two rounds, just getting by 37-45 Hawks in 7 Games. In the second Round, Lebron and the Cavs also pushed them to the limit.

If the Celtics had lost that game, then it would make people question superteams altogether. In that final Game. It didn't help them that Lebron had come to play, putting up 45 points on his own. But his dominance was met with an answer, as Paul Pierce went off too, scoring 41 and shutting down Lebron towards the end of the game, leading the Celtics on to the Conference Finals and eventually an NBA title.

yes, i remember the celtics looking very vulnerable after dominating the regular season. if the 4 seeded cavs beat them it would have been a huge upset, and a defining moment for lebron.

KniCks4LiFe
02-01-2014, 03:48 PM
Sprewell and Houston's Heat/Knicks 99'

And my 2nd favorite recently.

was without a doubt that 2005 Seattle SuperSonics team. It just felt magical, it felt like it was there that it would be the final season they'd all be together. NBA fans fell for them, Danny IDGAF oldschool hits Fortson, Ray Ray, Jerome karate chop James, Flip Murray, Rashard Lewis, Collison, damn I thought that team had a chance.

JLynn943
02-01-2014, 04:03 PM
Even though he's pretty much always great in the playoffs, Dirk's run throughout the whole playoffs en route to his only championship was huge for his legacy. He got rid of the stigma of being great but never winning one, and he did it as the premier player on that team.

Also, Iverson's run to reaching the finals was incredibly important for him. It gave him the reputation of having been able to carry a team to the finals, a team that he led to the only defeat of an all-time great Lakers team. Without a finals appearance, his legacy is questioned even more.

Cal827
02-01-2014, 05:11 PM
Even though he's pretty much always great in the playoffs, Dirk's run throughout the whole playoffs en route to his only championship was huge for his legacy. He got rid of the stigma of being great but never winning one, and he did it as the premier player on that team.

Also, Iverson's run to reaching the finals was incredibly important for him. It gave him the reputation of having been able to carry a team to the finals, a team that he led to the only defeat of an all-time great Lakers team. Without a finals appearance, his legacy is questioned even more.

In Iverson's run, that great Series between them and the Raptors led to the "Break" of Carter Here. A lot of people here didn't forgive him for going to Grad just before game 7. That last second miss, was the beginning of an injury plagued/team turmoil end

Chronz
02-01-2014, 05:39 PM
For some odd reason, the Celtics struggled in their first two rounds,
Pierce was pretty bad for that playoff run tho that was a legendary game. KG was equally responsible for slowing Bron down.

Chronz
02-01-2014, 05:40 PM
Sprewell and Houston's Heat/Knicks 99'

And my 2nd favorite recently.

was without a doubt that 2005 Seattle SuperSonics team. It just felt magical, it felt like it was there that it would be the final season they'd all be together. NBA fans fell for them, Danny IDGAF oldschool hits Fortson, Ray Ray, Jerome karate chop James, Flip Murray, Rashard Lewis, Collison, damn I thought that team had a chance.
interesting selections.

DreamShaker
02-02-2014, 12:06 AM
Magic's Lakers beating Bird's Celts after the "Tragic Johnson" stuff just one year later.

Hakeem beating Ewing, Robinson, Barkley, Malone, and Shaq in a two year playoff span to become a two time champion. Cemented his legacy.

Kobe winning 2 without Shaq. That would have always haunted him.

Dirk finally winning one.

The 72 Lakers. West finally wins one, and Wilt gets his 2nd. Both huge for them after getting pounded by the Celts so much.

DreamShaker
02-02-2014, 12:09 AM
James Worthy also had the game of his life in a Finals game 7. 88 vs. Detroit. That is the game everyone points to when talking about "Big Game James".