1961 NBA playoffs

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The 1961 NBA playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 1960-61 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Division champion Boston Celtics defeating the Western Division champion St. Louis Hawks 4 games to 1 in the NBA Finals.

1961 NBA playoffs
DatesMarch 14–April 11, 1961
Season1960–61
Teams6
ChampionsBoston Celtics (4th title)
Runners-upSt. Louis Hawks (4th finals appearance)
Semifinalists

The Lakers made the playoffs for the first time after moving to Los Angeles. They were one game away from their first Finals in L.A. as the St. Louis Hawks defeat them.

The Division Semifinals were extended from a best-of-three to a best-of-five series.

For the Celtics, it was their third straight NBA title and fourth overall. This would be the last Finals appearance for the Hawks franchise to date; though they still exist in the NBA as the Atlanta Hawks, they have yet to return to the Finals as of 2020.

BracketEdit

  Division Semifinals Division Finals NBA Finals
                           
E3 Syracuse 3     E1 Boston 4
E2 Philadelphia 0     E3 Syracuse 1  
Eastern Division
  E1 Boston 4
  W1 St. Louis 1
W3 Detroit 2     W1 St. Louis 4
W2 Los Angeles 3     W2 Los Angeles 3
Western Division

Bold Series winner
Italic Team with home-court advantage in NBA Finals


Division SemifinalsEdit

Eastern Division SemifinalsEdit

(2) Philadelphia Warriors vs. (3) Syracuse NationalsEdit

March 14
Syracuse Nationals 115, Philadelphia Warriors 107
Scoring by quarter: 34–24, 23–32, 29–19, 29–32
Pts: Larry Costello 28
Rebs: Swede Halbrook 15
Asts: Larry Costello 11
Pts: Wilt Chamberlain 46
Rebs: Wilt Chamberlain 32
Asts: Tom Gola 7
Syracuse leads series, 1–0
March 16
Philadelphia Warriors 114, Syracuse Nationals 115
Scoring by quarter: 22–26, 35–28, 22–39, 35–22
Pts: Wilt Chamberlain 32
Rebs: Wilt Chamberlain 14
Asts: Arizin, Attles 5 each
Pts: Hal Greer 26
Rebs: Dolph Schayes 14
Asts: Larry Costello 6
Syracuse leads series, 2–0
March 18
Syracuse Nationals 106, Philadelphia Warriors 103
Scoring by quarter: 31–22, 19–30, 27–30, 29–21
Pts: Larry Costello 20
Rebs: Red Kerr 18
Asts: Larry Costello 8
Pts: Wilt Chamberlain 33
Rebs: Wilt Chamberlain 23
Asts: Gola, Rodgers 5 each
Syracuse wins series, 3–0


This was the eighth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the 76ers/Nationals winning four of the first seven meetings.

Western Division SemifinalsEdit

(2) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (3) Detroit PistonsEdit

March 14
Detroit Pistons 102, Los Angeles Lakers 120
Scoring by quarter: 25–30, 28–29, 23–34, 26–27
Pts: Gene Shue 20
Rebs: Walter Dukes 11
Pts: Elgin Baylor 40
Rebs: Ray Felix 21
Los Angeles leads series, 1–0
March 15
Detroit Pistons 118, Los Angeles Lakers 127
Scoring by quarter: 24–30, 31–24, 28–37, 35–36
Pts: McMillon, Shue 24 each
Rebs: Walter Dukes 12
Pts: Elgin Baylor 49
Rebs: Elgin Baylor 21
Los Angeles leads series, 2–0
March 17
Los Angeles Lakers 113, Detroit Pistons 124
Scoring by quarter: 25–24, 25–42, 29–35, 34–23
Pts: Elgin Baylor 26 Pts: Bob Ferry 30
Los Angeles leads series, 2–1
Detroit Olympia, Detroit, Michigan
Attendance: 3,422
March 18
Los Angeles Lakers 114, Detroit Pistons 123
Scoring by quarter: 39–30, 21–27, 25–37, 29–29
Pts: Elgin Baylor 47 Pts: Gene Shue 29
Series tied, 2–2
March 19
Detroit Pistons 120, Los Angeles Lakers 137
Scoring by quarter: 21–34, 25–27, 32–43, 42–33
Pts: Bob Ferry 25
Rebs: Bob Ferry 16
Pts: Elgin Baylor 35
Rebs: Baylor, Felix 15 each
Los Angeles wins series, 3–2


This was the eighth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Lakers winning six of the first seven meetings when the Lakers were in Minneapolis.

Division FinalsEdit

Eastern Division FinalsEdit

(1) Boston Celtics vs. (3) Syracuse NationalsEdit

March 19
Syracuse Nationals 115, Boston Celtics 128
Scoring by quarter: 29–37, 27–22, 28–35, 31–34
Pts: Dolph Schayes 26
Asts: Schayes, Costello 6 each
Pts: Frank Ramsey 25
Asts: Bob Cousy 9
Boston leads series, 1–0
March 21
Boston Celtics 98, Syracuse Nationals 115
Scoring by quarter: 21–28, 30–26, 20–33, 27–28
Pts: Bill Russell 17
Asts: Bill Russell 5
Pts: Dolph Schayes 32
Asts: Larry Costello 9
Series tied, 1–1
March 23
Syracuse Nationals 110, Boston Celtics 133
Scoring by quarter: 27–35, 25–31, 29–42, 29–25
Pts: Dick Barnett 22
Rebs: Red Kerr 11
Asts: Larry Costello 4
Pts: Bill Sharman 30
Rebs: Bill Russell 39
Asts: Bob Cousy 12
Boston leads series, 2–1
Boston Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Attendance: 11,754
March 25
Boston Celtics 120, Syracuse Nationals 107
Scoring by quarter: 25–20, 32–25, 29–33, 34–29
Pts: Tom Heinsohn 22
Asts: Bob Cousy 9
Pts: Dolph Schayes 23
Asts: Barnett, Costello 4 each
Boston leads series, 3–1
March 26
Syracuse Nationals 101, Boston Celtics 123
Scoring by quarter: 25–23, 32–36, 26–29, 18–35
Pts: Dick Barnett 25
Rebs: Swede Halbrook 14
Asts: four players 4 each
Pts: Bill Sharman 27
Rebs: Bill Russell 33
Asts: Frank Ramsey 6
Boston wins series, 4–1
Boston Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Attendance: 12,292


This was the eighth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Nationals winning four of the first seven meetings.

Western Division FinalsEdit

(1) St. Louis Hawks vs. (2) Los Angeles LakersEdit

March 21
Los Angeles Lakers 122, St. Louis Hawks 118
Scoring by quarter: 34–29, 29–34, 27–27, 32–28
Pts: Elgin Baylor 44
Rebs: Elgin Baylor 14
Pts: Bob Pettit 28
Rebs: Bob Pettit 20
Los Angeles leads series, 1–0
March 22
Los Angeles Lakers 106, St. Louis Hawks 121
Scoring by quarter: 25–31, 31–31, 22–30, 28–29
Pts: Elgin Baylor 35
Rebs: Elgin Baylor 9
Pts: Clyde Lovellette 28
Rebs: Bob Pettit 19
Series tied, 1–1
March 24
St. Louis Hawks 112, Los Angeles Lakers 118
Scoring by quarter: 28–29, 22–31, 28–29, 34–29
Pts: Bob Pettit 26
Rebs: Bob Pettit 13
Pts: Elgin Baylor 25
Rebs: Elgin Baylor 18
Los Angeles leads series, 2–1
March 25
St. Louis Hawks 118, Los Angeles Lakers 117
Scoring by quarter: 28–26, 29–31, 31–29, 30–31
Pts: Bob Pettit 40
Rebs: Bob Pettit 18
Pts: Jerry West 33
Rebs: Elgin Baylor 15
Series tied, 2–2
March 27
Los Angeles Lakers 121, St. Louis Hawks 112
Scoring by quarter: 24–36, 33–25, 28–17, 36–34
Pts: Elgin Baylor 47
Rebs: Elgin Baylor 20
Pts: Cliff Hagan 26
Rebs: Bob Pettit 21
Los Angeles leads series, 3–2
March 29
St. Louis Hawks 114, Los Angeles Lakers 113 (OT)
Scoring by quarter: 30–21, 29–23, 24–26, 17–30Overtime: 14–13
Pts: Bob Pettit 31
Rebs: Bob Pettit 21
Pts: Elgin Baylor 39
Rebs: Elgin Baylor 21
Series tied, 3–3
April 1
Los Angeles Lakers 103, St. Louis Hawks 105
Scoring by quarter: 28–22, 20–27, 30–32, 25–24
Pts: Elgin Baylor 39
Rebs: Baylor, West 12 each
Pts: Bob Pettit 31
Rebs: Bob Pettit 17
St. Louis wins series, 4–3


This was the fifth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Hawks winning three of the first four meetings while the Lakers were based in Minneapolis.

NBA Finals: (E1) Boston Celtics vs. (W1) St. Louis HawksEdit

April 2
St. Louis Hawks 95, Boston Celtics 129
Scoring by quarter: 26–30, 22–26, 25–35, 22–38
Pts: Cliff Hagan 33
Rebs: Cliff Hagan 13
Asts: Hagan, Sauldsberry 4 each
Pts: Tom Heinsohn 26
Rebs: Bill Russell 31
Asts: Bob Cousy 7
Boston leads series, 1–0
Boston Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Attendance: 11,531
April 5
St. Louis Hawks 108, Boston Celtics 116
Scoring by quarter: 32–27, 20–26, 23–31, 33–32
Pts: Cliff Hagan 40
Rebs: Bob Pettit 19
Asts: Cliff Hagan 6
Pts: Bob Cousy 26
Rebs: Bill Russell 28
Asts: Bob Cousy 14
Boston leads series, 2–0
Boston Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Attendance: 13,909
April 8
Boston Celtics 120, St. Louis Hawks 124
Scoring by quarter: 31–28, 35–38, 31–32, 23–26
Pts: Russell, Heinsohn 24 each
Rebs: Bill Russell 23
Asts: Bill Russell 9
Pts: Bob Pettit 31
Rebs: Bob Pettit 24
Asts: Si Green 7
Boston leads series, 2–1
April 9
Boston Celtics 119, St. Louis Hawks 104
Scoring by quarter: 28–31, 24–25, 39–26, 28–22
Pts: Cousy, Sanders 22 each
Rebs: Bill Russell 24
Asts: Bob Cousy 12
Pts: Bob Pettit 40
Rebs: Bob Pettit 18
Asts: Cliff Hagan 7
Boston leads series, 3–1
Kiel Auditorium, St. Louis, Missouri
Attendance: 10,442
April 11
St. Louis Hawks 112, Boston Celtics 121
Scoring by quarter: 39–33, 22–29, 23–37, 28–22
Pts: Bob Pettit 24
Rebs: Pettit, Sauldsberry 11 each
Asts: Johnny McCarthy 6
Pts: Bill Russell 30
Rebs: Bill Russell 38
Asts: Bob Cousy 12
Boston wins series, 4–1
Boston Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Attendance: 13,909


This was the fourth playoff meeting between these two teams, with the Celtics winning two of the first three meetings.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Team Rivalry Finder — Golden State Warriors versus Philadelphia 76ers (Playoffs)". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
  2. ^ "Team Rivalry Finder — Detroit Pistons versus Los Angeles Lakers (Playoffs)". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
  3. ^ "Team Rivalry Finder — Boston Celtics versus Philadelphia 76ers (Playoffs)". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
  4. ^ "Team Rivalry Finder — Atlanta Hawks versus Los Angeles Lakers (Playoffs)". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
  5. ^ "Team Rivalry Finder — Atlanta Hawks versus Boston Celtics (Playoffs)". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved February 19, 2021.

External linksEdit