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1977–78 Seattle SuperSonics season

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The 1977–78 Seattle SuperSonics season was the 11th season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA). With a disappointing 5–17 start, the Sonics replaced coach Bob Hopkins with future Hall of Famer Lenny Wilkens, who led the team to a 47–35 finish. In the playoffs, the SuperSonics defeated the Los Angeles Lakers in three games in the First Round, then upset the defending NBA champions Portland Trail Blazers in six games in the Western Conference Semifinals, before finally defeating the Denver Nuggets in six games in the Conference Finals, making their first trip to the NBA Finals in franchise history, where they lost the series to the Washington Bullets in 7 games.

1977–78 Seattle SuperSonics season
Conference champions
Head coachBob Hopkins,
Lenny Wilkens
General managerZollie Volchok
Owner(s)Sam Schulman
ArenaSeattle Center Coliseum
Results
Record47–35 (.573)
PlaceDivision: 3rd (Pacific)
Conference: 4th (Western)
Playoff finishNBA Finals
(Lost to Bullets 3–4)

Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
Local media
TelevisionKTNT-TV
RadioKOMO
< 1976–77 1978–79 >

Contents

Draft picksEdit

Round Pick Player Position Nationality College
1 8 Jack Sikma Forward/Center   United States Illinois Wesleyan
3 52 Joe Hassett Guard   United States Providence

RosterEdit

Seattle SuperSonics roster
Players Coaches
Pos. No. Name Height Weight DOB (YYYY-MM-DD) From
G 32 Brown, Fred 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 182 lb (83 kg) 1948–08–07 Iowa
F 30 Fleming, Al 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1954–04–05 Arizona
G 10 Hassett, Joe 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 180 lb (82 kg) 1955–09–11 Providence
G 24 Johnson, Dennis 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 185 lb (84 kg) 1954–09–18 Pepperdine
F 27 Johnson, John 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1947–10–18 Iowa
F 45 Seals, Bruce 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1953–06–18 Xavier (Louisiana)
F/C 43 Sikma, Jack 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) 230 lb (104 kg) 1955–11–14 Illinois Wesleyan
F/C 35 Silas, Paul 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1943–07–12 Creighton
F 42 Walker, Wally 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1954–07–18 Virginia
C 40 Webster, Marvin 7 ft 1 in (2.16 m) 225 lb (102 kg) 1952–04–13 Morgan State
G 1 Williams, Gus 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) 175 lb (79 kg) 1953–10–10 Southern California
Head coach

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Unsigned draft pick
  • (FA) Free agent
  • (S) Suspended
  •   Injured

Regular seasonEdit

StandingsEdit

Pacific Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Portland Trail Blazers 58 24 .707 36–5 22–19 13–3
x-Phoenix Suns 49 33 .598 9 34–7 15–26 8–8
x-Seattle SuperSonics 47 35 .573 11 31–10 16–25 8–8
x-Los Angeles Lakers 45 37 .549 13 29–12 16–25 6–10
Golden State Warriors 43 39 .524 15 30–11 13–28 5–11
# Western Conference
Team W L PCT GB
1 z-Portland Trail Blazers 58 24 .707
2 y-Denver Nuggets 48 34 .585 10
3 x-Phoenix Suns 49 33 .598 9
4 x-Seattle SuperSonics 47 35 .573 11
5 x-Los Angeles Lakers 45 37 .549 13
6 x-Milwaukee Bucks 44 38 .537 14
7 Golden State Warriors 43 39 .524 15
8 Chicago Bulls 40 42 .488 18
9 Detroit Pistons 38 44 .463 20
10 Indiana Pacers 31 51 .378 27
11 Kansas City Kings 31 51 .378 27



Record vs. opponentsEdit

1977–78 NBA records
Team ATL BOS BUF CHI CLE DEN DET GSW HOU IND KCK LAL MIL NJN NOJ NYK PHI PHO POR SAS SEA WAS
Atlanta 2–2 3–1 1–3 1–3 1–3 2–2 1–3 3–1 3–1 2–1 3–1 2–2 3–1 2–2 2–2 2–2 3–1 1–3 1–3 2–1 1–3
Boston 2–2 3–1 1–3 1–3 1–3 1–3 2–2 2–2 2–1 2–2 1–2 3–1 3–1 2–2 2–2 0–4 2–2 1–3 0–4 0–4 1–3
Buffalo 1–3 1–3 3–1 1–3 1–3 1–3 0–3 3–1 1–3 1–2 1–3 1–3 2–2 2–2 3–1 1–3 0–4 1–3 1–3 1–3 1–3
Chicago 3–1 3–1 1–3 3–1 2–2 2–2 1–3 3–1 3–1 0–4 2–2 1–3 1–2 2–2 1–3 3–0 2–2 1–3 2–2 2–2 2–1
Cleveland 3–1 3–1 3–1 1–3 3–1 2–2 2–2 2–2 2–1 2–2 2–2 3–1 3–1 2–2 3–1 1–3 1–2 0–4 0–4 3–1 2–2
Denver 3–1 3–1 3–1 2–2 1–3 2–2 2–2 3–0 2–2 2–2 3–1 3–1 3–1 3–1 1–3 1–3 2–2 3–1 2–1 1–3 3–1
Detroit 2–2 3–1 3–1 2–2 2–2 2–2 2–2 3–1 1–3 1–3 2–2 2–2 3–1 3–0 0–4 0–4 2–2 1–3 1–3 1–3 2–2
Golden State 3–1 2–2 3–0 3–1 2–2 2–2 2–2 2–1 3–1 3–1 0–4 2–2 3–1 0–4 2–2 1–3 2–2 1–3 3–1 2–2 2–2
Houston 1–3 2–2 1–3 1–3 2–2 0–3 1–3 1–2 3–1 2–2 1–3 1–3 2–2 1–3 2–2 2–2 1–3 2–2 1–3 0–4 1–3
Indiana 1–3 1–2 3–1 1–3 1–2 2–2 3–1 1–3 1–3 2–2 1–3 0–4 2–2 2–2 1–3 2–2 1–3 1–3 1–3 1–3 3–1
Kansas City 1–2 2–2 2–1 4–0 2–2 2–2 3–1 1–3 2–2 2–2 2–2 0–4 2–2 2–2 0–4 1–3 0–4 0–4 0–4 1–3 2–2
Los Angeles 1–3 2–1 3–1 2–2 2–2 1–3 2–2 4–0 3–1 3–1 2–2 3–1 4–0 2–1 3–1 2–2 1–3 0–4 2–2 1–3 2–2
Milwaukee 2–2 1–3 3–1 3–1 1–3 1–3 2–2 2–2 3–1 4–0 4–0 1–3 3–1 2–1 3–1 1–2 1–3 1–3 2–2 1–3 3–1
New Jersey 1–3 1–3 2–2 2–1 1–3 1–3 1–3 1–3 2–2 2–2 2–2 0–4 1–3 0–4 1–3 0–4 2–2 0–3 0–4 2–2 2–2
New Orleans 2–2 2–2 2–2 2–2 2–2 1–3 1–3 4–0 3–1 2–2 2–2 1–2 1–2 4–0 1–3 2–2 1–3 3–1 1–3 2–2 0–4
New York 2–2 2–2 1–3 3–1 1–3 3–1 3–0 2–2 2–2 3–1 4–0 1–3 1–3 3–1 3–1 1–3 1–3 1–3 2–2 2–1 2–2
Philadelphia 2–2 4–0 3–1 1–3 3–1 3–1 4–0 3–1 2–2 2–2 3–1 2–2 2–1 4–0 2–2 3–1 2–1 2–2 3–1 3–1 2–2
Phoenix 1–3 2–2 4–0 2–2 2–1 2–2 2–2 2–2 3–1 3–1 4–0 3–1 3–1 2–2 3–1 3–1 1–2 1–3 2–2 2–2 2–2
Portland 3–1 3–1 3–1 3–1 4–0 1–3 3–1 3–1 2–2 3–1 4–0 4–0 3–1 3–1 1–3 3–0 2–2 3–1 2–2 3–1 2–1
San Antonio 3–1 4–0 3–1 2–2 4–0 1–2 2–1 1–3 3–1 3–1 4–0 2–2 2–2 4–0 3–1 2–2 1–3 2–2 2–2 2–2 2–2
Seattle 1–2 4–0 3–1 2–2 1–3 3–1 3–1 2–2 4–0 3–1 3–1 3–1 3–1 2–2 2–1 1–3 1–3 2–2 1–3 2–2 1–3
Washington 3–1 3–1 3–1 1–2 2–2 1–3 2–2 2–2 3–1 1–3 2–2 2–2 1–3 2–2 4–0 2–2 2–2 2–2 1–2 2–2 3–1

Game logEdit

1977–78 game log
Total: 47–35 (Home: 31–10; Road: 16–25)
1977–78 season schedule

PlayoffsEdit

West First RoundEdit

(4) Seattle SuperSonics vs. (5) Los Angeles Lakers: Sonics win series 2–1

  • Game 1 @ Seattle: Seattle 102, Los Angeles 90
  • Game 2 @ Los Angeles: Los Angeles 105, Seattle 99
  • Game 3 @ Seattle: Seattle 111, Los Angeles 102

West Conference SemifinalsEdit

 
The Seattle SuperSonics playing the Portland Trail Blazers during the 1978 NBA playoffs.

(1) Portland Trail Blazers vs. (4) Seattle SuperSonics: Sonics win series 4–2

  • Game 1 @ Portland: Seattle 104, Portland 95
  • Game 2 @ Portland: Portland 96, Seattle 93
  • Game 3 @ Seattle: Seattle 99, Portland 84
  • Game 4 @ Seattle: Seattle 100, Portland 98
  • Game 5 @ Portland: Portland 113, Seattle 89
  • Game 6 @ Seattle: Seattle 105, Portland 94

West Conference FinalsEdit

(2) Denver Nuggets vs. (4) Seattle SuperSonics: Sonics win series 4–2

  • Game 1 @ Denver: Denver 116, Seattle 107
  • Game 2 @ Denver: Seattle 121, Denver 111
  • Game 3 @ Seattle: Seattle 105, Denver 91
  • Game 4 @ Seattle: Seattle 100, Denver 94
  • Game 5 @ Denver: Denver 123, Seattle 114
  • Game 6 @ Seattle: Seattle 123, Denver 108

NBA FinalsEdit

(3) Washington Bullets vs. (4) Seattle SuperSonics: Bullets win series 4–3

  • Game 1 @ Seattle: Seattle 106, Washington 102
  • Game 2 @ Washington: Washington 106, Seattle 98
  • Game 3 @ Washington: Seattle 93, Washington 92
  • Game 4 @ Seattle: Washington 120, Seattle 116 (OT)
  • Game 5 @ Seattle: Seattle 98, Washington 94
  • Game 6 @ Washington: Washington 117, Seattle 82
  • Game 7 @ Seattle: Washington 105, Seattle 99

Awards and honorsEdit

Player statisticsEdit

Legend
GP Games played RPG Rebounds per game BPG Blocks per game
MIN Minutes played APG Assists per game TPG Turnovers per game
PPG Points per game SPG Steals per game FPG Field goals per game



Regular seasonEdit

Seattle SuperSonics Stats - 1977-78
PlayerGPMINPPGRPGAPGSPGBPGTPGFPG
Fred Brown7227.316.62.63.31.50.32.37.1
Al Fleming204.92.01.50.40.00.30.80.8
Joe Hassett488.44.00.80.90.40.00.71.9
Dennis Johnson8127.312.73.62.81.50.62.04.5
John Johnson7623.810.74.02.80.60.32.24.5
Bruce Seals7318.17.83.11.10.60.51.43.2
Jack Sikma8227.310.78.31.60.80.52.34.2
Paul Silas8226.55.88.11.80.80.21.92.2
Wally Walker6814.86.53.01.00.40.11.02.7
Marvin Webster8235.514.012.62.50.62.03.15.2
Gus Williams7932.618.13.23.72.30.52.47.6

PlayoffsEdit

Seattle SuperSonics Stats - 1977-78
PlayerGPMINPPGRPGAPGSPGBPGTPGFPG
Fred Brown2226.117.32.12.41.00.11.47.0
Al Fleming54.21.40.80.40.20.00.40.4
Joe Hassett82.81.80.30.00.10.00.10.9
Dennis Johnson2237.616.14.63.31.01.02.55.5
John Johnson2227.110.14.52.50.40.32.44.3
Bruce Seals910.23.02.20.90.20.20.71.3
Jack Sikma2231.913.78.11.20.80.51.65.2
Paul Silas2227.54.98.51.60.50.31.41.5
Wally Walker2013.14.71.90.60.40.20.91.8
Marvin Webster2241.116.113.12.60.32.63.46.2
Gus Williams2231.918.33.94.02.00.52.57.4

ReferencesEdit