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1999–2000 Los Angeles Lakers season

The 1999–2000 NBA season was the Lakers' 52nd season in the National Basketball Association, and 40th season in Los Angeles.[1] It was also the Lakers first season playing in their new arena, the Staples Center. During the offseason, the team re-acquired former Lakers forward A. C. Green from the Dallas Mavericks, and signed free agent John Salley. Green won championships with the team in the 1980s. More significantly, the Lakers hired former Chicago Bulls coach Phil Jackson, who would go on to help the team win 5 NBA Championships over the course of the next 12 years. The Lakers posted long winning streaks throughout the entire season finishing the regular season with 67 wins, the most wins since the 1971–72 team won a franchise-record 69 games. The Lakers clinched the top seed in the playoffs for the 25th time in franchise history and the first in nine years. Center Shaquille O'Neal was almost unanimously named the Most Valuable Player of the regular season.[2]

1999–2000 Los Angeles Lakers season
NBA champions
Conference champions
Division champions
Head coachPhil Jackson
General managerJerry West
Owner(s)Jerry Buss
ArenaStaples Center
Results
Record67–15 (.817)
PlaceDivision: 1st (Pacific)
Conference: 1st (Western)
Playoff finishNBA Champions
(Defeated Pacers 4–2)

Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
Local media
TelevisionFox Sports Net West, KCAL
RadioAM 570 KLAC
< 1998–99 2000–01 >

The Lakers were then pushed to the limit by the Sacramento Kings whom they defeated in a deciding fifth game, before going on to defeat the Phoenix Suns in five games in the semifinals. In the Western Conference Finals, they defeated a Portland Trail Blazers team featuring Rasheed Wallace, Scottie Pippen and Steve Smith in seven games before going on to win the NBA Finals 4–2 against the Indiana Pacers, earning the franchise its 12th NBA championship. It was the Lakers' first championship since 1988. It was also Phil Jackson's seventh championship as a head coach, and the first with a team besides the Chicago Bulls.

The season is memorable, 21-year-old Kobe Bryant being named to the All-NBA Defensive First Team while emerging as one of the NBA's young superstars, Glen Rice finishing first on the Lakers with 84 three-pointers, the Lakers signing Ron Harper and Brian Shaw to give the team a veteran presence, and hiring Phil Jackson to give the team a championship experience. Bryant, O'Neal and coach Jackson represented the Western Conference in the 2000 NBA All-Star Game. Following the season, Rice was traded to the New York Knicks, Green signed as a free agent with the Miami Heat, and Salley retired after making a comeback.

For the season, the Lakers sported new uniforms which remained in use until 2018.

Contents

Draft picksEdit

Round Pick Player Position Nationality College
1 23 Devean George SF   United States Augsburg
2 30 John Celestand PG   United States Villanova

[3]

RosterEdit

Los Angeles Lakers roster
Players Coaches
Pos. No. Name Height Weight DOB (YYYY-MM-DD) From
G/F 8   Bryant, Kobe 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 205 lb (93 kg) Lower Merion HS (PA)
G 11   Celestand, John 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 178 lb (81 kg) Villanova
G 2   Fisher, Derek 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) 210 lb (95 kg) Arkansas-Little Rock
F 17   Fox, Rick 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 230 lb (104 kg) North Carolina
F 3   George, Devean 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 235 lb (107 kg) Augsburg
F 45   Green, A.C. 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m) 220 lb (100 kg) Oregon State
G 4   Harper, Ron 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 185 lb (84 kg) Miami (OH)
F 5   Horry, Robert 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 240 lb (109 kg) Alabama
C 40   Knight, Travis 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 235 lb (107 kg) Connecticut
G 10   Lue, Tyronn   6 ft 0 in (1.83 m) 175 lb (79 kg) Nebraska
C 34   O'Neal, Shaquille 7 ft 1 in (2.16 m) 325 lb (147 kg) LSU
F 41   Rice, Glen 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 215 lb (98 kg) Michigan
F/C 16   Salley, John 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) 190 lb (86 kg) Georgia Tech
G 20   Shaw, Brian 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 190 lb (86 kg) UC Santa Barbara
Head coach

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

Roster
Last transaction: 1999-11-12

Regular seasonEdit

Season standingsEdit

Pacific Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Los Angeles Lakers 67 15 .817 36–5 31–10 20–4
x-Portland Trail Blazers 59 23 .720 8 30–11 29–12 21–3
x-Phoenix Suns 53 29 .646 14 32–9 21–20 15–9
x-Seattle SuperSonics 45 37 .549 22 24–17 21–20 12–12
x-Sacramento Kings 44 38 .537 23 30–11 14–27 9–15
Golden State Warriors 19 63 .232 48 12–29 7–34 2–22
Los Angeles Clippers 15 67 .183 52 10–31 5–36 5–19
# Western Conference
Team W L PCT GB
1 z-Los Angeles Lakers 67 15 .817
2 y-Utah Jazz 55 27 .671 12
3 x-Portland Trail Blazers 59 23 .720 8
4 x-San Antonio Spurs 53 29 .646 14
5 x-Phoenix Suns 53 29 .646 14
6 x-Minnesota Timberwolves 50 32 .610 17
7 x-Seattle SuperSonics 45 37 .549 22
8 x-Sacramento Kings 44 38 .537 23
9 Dallas Mavericks 40 42 .488 27
10 Denver Nuggets 35 47 .427 32
11 Houston Rockets 34 48 .415 33
12 Vancouver Grizzlies 22 60 .268 45
13 Golden State Warriors 19 63 .232 48
14 Los Angeles Clippers 15 67 .183 52


Record vs. opponentsEdit

1999–2000 NBA records
Team ATL BOS CHA CHI CLE DAL DEN DET GSW HOU IND LAC LAL MIA MIL MIN NJN NYK ORL PHI PHO POR SAC SAS SEA TOR UTA VAN WAS
Atlanta 1–3 1–3 3–1 3–1 0–2 1–1 1–3 0–2 1–1 1–3 1–1 0–2 2–2 0–4 1–1 3–1 2–1 0–3 0–4 0–2 0–2 2–0 0–2 1–1 2–2 0–2 1–1 1–3
Boston 3–1 1–3 2–2 2–2 1–1 2–0 0–3 1–1 1–1 1–3 1–1 0–2 1–3 1–2 0–2 3–1 2–2 2–2 1–3 1–1 0–2 1–1 0–2 1–1 2–2 1–1 1–1 3–1
Charlotte 3–1 3–1 4–0 3–1 1–1 1–1 2–2 2–0 1–1 2–2 2–0 0–2 2–2 3–1 2–0 2–1 1–3 2–2 3–1 1–1 0–2 0–2 0–2 1–1 3–1 0–2 2–0 3–0
Chicago 1–3 2–2 0–4 1–3 0–2 1–1 1–3 0–2 0–2 1–3 2–0 0–2 2–2 1–3 0–2 2–1 0–3 0–4 0–4 0–2 0–2 0–2 0–2 1–1 0–4 0–2 0–2 2–2
Cleveland 1–3 2–2 1–3 3–1 2–0 2–0 2–2 1–1 1–1 0–4 2–0 0–2 0–3 1–3 0–2 2–2 3–1 2–1 0–4 0–2 1–1 0–2 1–1 0–2 0–4 0–2 2–0 3–1
Dallas 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–0 0–2 3–1 2–0 4–0 1–3 1–1 4–0 1–3 0–2 0–2 2–2 0–2 0–2 1–1 0–2 3–1 2–2 1–3 2–2 1–3 1–1 1–3 3–1 1–1
Denver 1–1 0–2 1–1 1–1 0–2 1–3 1–1 2–2 2–2 0–2 3–1 1–3 0–2 2–0 2–2 1–1 1–1 0–2 2–0 1–3 2–2 2–2 1–3 1–3 2–0 2–2 2–2 1–1
Detroit 3–1 3–0 2–2 3–1 2–2 0–2 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–3 2–0 0–2 2–2 3–1 0–2 2–1 1–3 2–2 2–2 0–2 1–1 0–2 1–1 2–0 2–2 0–2 2–0 2–2
Golden State 2–0 1–1 0–2 2–0 1–1 0–4 2–2 0–2 1–3 0–2 1–3 0–4 1–1 1–1 1–3 0–2 0–2 1–1 0–2 0–4 0–4 1–3 0–4 0–4 0–2 0–4 3–1 1–1
Houston 1–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 3–1 2–2 1–1 3–1 0–2 4–0 2–2 1–1 0–2 0–4 1–1 0–2 0–2 1–1 2–2 2–2 1–3 0–4 1–3 0–2 1–3 2–2 1–1
Indiana 3–1 3–1 2–2 3–1 4–0 1–1 2–0 3–1 2–0 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–2 2–2 1–1 3–1 2–2 2–1 2–2 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 3–1 2–0 2–0 2–1
L.A. Clippers 1–1 1–1 0–2 0–2 0–2 0–4 1–3 0–2 3–1 0–4 1–1 0–4 0–2 0–2 1–3 1–1 1–1 0–2 1–1 0–4 0–4 1–3 0–4 1–3 0–2 0–4 1–3 1–1
L.A. Lakers 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 3–1 3–1 2–0 4–0 2–2 1–1 4–0 2–0 2–0 4–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 4–0 2–2 3–1 1–3 3–1 1–1 3–1 4–0 1–1
Miami 2–2 3–1 2–2 2–2 3–0 2–0 2–0 2–2 1–1 1–1 2–2 2–0 0–2 2–2 2–0 2–2 3–1 3–1 3–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–2 1–1 1–1 4–0
Milwaukee 4–0 2–1 1–3 3–1 3–1 2–0 0–2 1–3 1–1 2–0 2–2 2–0 0–2 2–2 0–2 1–3 0–4 4–0 0–3 1–1 0–2 1–1 2–0 1–1 2–2 1–1 1–1 3–1
Minnesota 1–1 2–0 0–2 2–0 2–0 2–2 2–2 2–0 3–1 4–0 1–1 3–1 0–4 0–2 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–3 2–2 3–1 3–1 2–2 2–0 3–1 4–0 0–2
New Jersey 1–3 1–3 1–2 1–2 2–2 2–0 1–1 1–2 2–0 1–1 1–3 1–1 0–2 2–2 3–1 1–1 1–3 3–2 1–3 0–2 1–1 1–1 0–2 0–2 2–2 0–2 0–2 1–3
New York 1–2 2–2 3–1 3–0 1–3 2–0 1–1 3–1 2–0 2–0 2–2 1–1 0–2 1–3 4–0 1–1 3–1 3–1 3–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–3 0–2 2–0 2–2
Orlando 3–0 2–2 2–2 4–0 1–2 1–1 2–0 2–2 1–1 2–0 1–2 2–0 0–2 1–3 0–4 1–1 2–3 1–3 2–2 0–2 0–2 0–2 1–1 1–1 2–2 1–1 2–0 4–0
Philadelphia 4–0 3–1 1–3 4–0 4–0 2–0 0–2 2–2 2–0 1–1 2–2 1–1 0–2 1–3 3–0 1–1 3–1 1–3 2–2 0–2 0–2 1–1 0–2 2–0 3–0 1–1 2–0 3–1
Phoenix 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–0 2–0 1–3 3–1 2–0 4–0 2–2 1–1 4–0 0–4 1–1 1–1 3–1 2–0 1–1 2–0 2–0 1–3 4–0 2–2 2–2 1–1 0–4 4–0 2–0
Portland 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 1–1 2–2 2–2 1–1 4–0 2–2 0–2 4–0 2–2 1–1 2–0 2–2 1–1 0–2 2–0 2–0 3–1 4–0 3–1 4–0 1–1 3–1 3–1 2–0
Sacramento 0–2 1–1 2–0 2–0 2–0 3–1 2–2 2–0 3–1 3–1 1–1 3–1 1–3 0–2 1–1 1–3 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 0–4 0–4 3–1 2–2 1–1 1–3 3–1 2–0
San Antonio 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 1–1 2–2 3–1 1–1 4–0 4–0 1–1 4–0 3–1 1–1 0–2 1–3 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–0 2–2 1–3 1–3 2–2 1–1 2–2 4–0 1–1
Seattle 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 3–1 3–1 0–2 4–0 3–1 1–1 3–1 1–3 1–1 1–1 2–2 2–0 0–2 1–1 0–2 2–2 0–4 2–2 2–2 0–2 2–2 4–0 2–0
Toronto 2–2 2–2 1–3 4–0 4–0 1–1 0–2 2–2 2–0 2–0 1–3 2–0 1–1 2–1 2–2 0–2 2–2 3–1 2–2 0–3 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–2
Utah 2–0 1–1 2–0 2–0 2–0 3–1 2–2 2–0 4–0 3–1 0–2 4–0 1–3 1–1 1–1 1–3 2–0 2–0 1–1 1–1 4–0 1–3 3–1 2–2 2–2 1–1 3–1 2–0
Vancouver 1–1 1–1 0–2 2–0 0–2 1–3 2–2 0–2 1–3 2–2 0–2 3–1 0–4 1–1 1–1 0–4 2–0 0–2 0–2 0–2 0–4 1–3 1–3 0–4 0–4 1–1 1–3 1–1
Washington 3–1 1–3 0–3 2–2 1–3 1–1 1–1 2–2 1–1 1–1 1–2 1–1 1–1 0–4 1–3 2–0 3–1 2–2 0–4 1–3 0–2 0–2 0–2 1–1 0–2 2–2 0–2 1–1

Regular Season SummaryEdit

The Lakers went 31-19 during the shortened lockout season of 1998-99, good enough to claim the fourth spot of the Western Conference. They cruised past the Rockets on the first round, before bowing down to the eventual champions, the Spurs.

The Lakers started the season without Kobe Bryant, so Phil Jackson uses veteran forwards such as A.C. Green and Glen Rice to fill the void left by Bryant.

NovemberEdit

On November 2, 1999, the Lakers started their season with a 91-84 win on the road against the Utah Jazz. Glen Rice led the Lakers with 28 points to go along with 5 3-pointers made. [4] The very next day, the Lakers got their first win at home after defeating the visiting Vancouver Grizzlies, 103-88, behind Shaquille O'Neal's double-double performance of 28 points and 10 rebounds. It was also the first time that the Lakers played in STAPLES Center. [5] Their first loss of the season came on November 6 when the Lakers were defeated by the home team, Portland Trailblazers, led by Scottie Pippen. In that game, Shaquille O'Neal led both teams in scoring as he scored 21 points to go along with 10 rebounds and 2 blocks.[6] The next two games, the Lakers were pitted against the Dallas Mavericks led by rising stars Steve Nash and Dirk Nowitzki. They played first at the Lakers homecourt then the next game, on the Mavericks homecourt. However, they were no match for the dominance of O'Neal who averaged 28.5 points per game, 15.0 rebounds per game and 2 blocks per game in those two contests.[7] [8] The Lakers will face the Houston Rockets the next two games, this time, they will face the Rockets first on the road before going home to face the Rockets there. During their first meeting on November 10, the Lakers were pushed to the limit for Shaquille O'Neal was fouled out in the game. He just played 16 minutes for the entire game. However, the Rockets were not able to capitalize the opportunity as the veterans of the Lakers led by Glen Rice's 24 points, powered the Lakers towards their 5th win of the season.[9] They match-up against each other again two days after, but without O'Neal who was suspended, they bowed to the visiting Rockets, 81-97, who was led by Hakeem Olajuwon and Steve Francis. Two days after, the Lakers bounced back because O'Neal was back who dominated the whole game against the visiting Atlanta Hawks. O'Neal recorded 23 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 blocks as he led the Lakers towards the win.[10] The Lakers, led by the strong performance of O'Neal, overpowered the home team, Phoenix Suns, who were led by Jason Kidd and former Bulls player, Luc Longley, 91-82. O'Neal recorded 34 points, 18 rebounds, 4 assists and 8 blocks for the Lakers.[11] On November 18, the Lakers were up against the Nick Van Exel-led Nuggets. Van Exel was the former point guard of the Lakers. During the first half, the Lakers were up 42-39. However, the Nuggets stormed back as they got the win, 93-82. It was the Lakers' third loss of the season. Shaquille O'Neal led all scorers with 36 points to go along with 8 rebounds.[12] The Lakers next faced the Chicago Bulls. O'Neal led the Lakers towards their eighth win of the season as they defeat the visiting Bulls, 103-95. O'Neal recorded 41 points, 17 rebounds and 7 blocks.[13] On November 21, the Lakers were up against the Vince Carter-led Toronto Raptors. However, Vince Carter scored 34 points to go along with 13 rebounds as the Raptors take the win in STAPLES Center, 111-102, to give the Lakers their fourth loss of the season. For the Lakers, O'Neal was again the leading scorer with 37 points to go along with 19 rebounds.[14] On their last game for the month in November, the Lakers traveled on the road to match-up against the Gary Payton-led Seattle Supersonics. However, the Lakers just proved too much to be handled as they dispatched the Supersonics, 101-77.[15] They finished the month of November with an 11-4 record.

DecemberEdit

On December 1, 1999, Kobe Bryant was back from almost a month of not playing due to injury, and this time, they were up against the 2-11 Golden State Warriors. Bryant came of the bench to play almost 30 minutes and scored 19 points and grabbed 6 rebounds. O'Neal also contributed 28 points and 23 rebounds as they got the 12th win of the season.[16] Six days later, the Lakers won their 15th game of the season, led by Shaquille O'Neal who recorded 30 points, 16 rebounds and 7 blocks, in a 91-80 win over the visiting Washington Wizards.[17] On December 12, Kobe Bryant scored 26 points and Shaquille O'Neal contributed 22 points and 24 rebounds as the Lakers won their 17th win of the season after beating the visiting Detroit Pistons, 101-93.[18] Two days after, Phil Jackson re-inserted Kobe Bryant into the startling lineup for the first time this season. And now, the Lakers were up against their division rivals, the L.A. Clippers. O'Neal recorded 21 points, 19 rebounds and 3 blocks and Bryant added 18 points as the Lakers dismissed the Clippers, 95-68.[19] On December 17, the Lakers won their fifth straight game as they won on the road against the Timberwolves, 97-88. Kobe Bryant paved the way with 28 points, 7 rebounds and 12 assists.[20] Three days later, Shaquille O'Neal recorded 34 points, 20 rebounds and 2 blocks in a 99-90 win over the home team, Boston Celtics, for the seventh straight win.[21] The next game, the Lakers were visited by the defending champions, the San Antonio Spurs who were led by the "Twin Towers" of Tim Duncan and David Robinson for a Christmas showdown. At halftime, the Lakers led the Spurs, 50-42, before the Spurs surged in the third quarter, outscoring the Lakers, 25-21, cutting the lead to four. However, the Lakers responded in the fourth quarter as they pulled away and won their eighth straight game.[22] Shaquille O'Neal recorded 35 points and 14 rebounds as the Lakers took a narrow win over the visiting Mavericks, 108-106.[23] On their last game of the century and year 1999, the Lakers won their tenth straight game, after defeating the visiting Suns, 103-88, thanks to Shaquille O'Neal's performance of 27 points, 19 rebounds, 7 assists and 5 blocks.[24] For the month of December, the Lakers have a record of 14-1, and they went undefeated at their homecourt.

JanuaryEdit

On the first two games of the 21st century (year 2000), the Lakers were up against the Clippers, whom they defeated both games. On the second game, O'Neal recorded 40 points and 19 rebounds for the Lakers.[25] On January 10, Bryant and O'Neal combined for 61 of the 130 points of the Lakers whom they guided towards a win over the visiting Nuggets. It was their 15th straight win[26] The next game, they traveled in Milwaukee in which they recorded their 16th straight win after beating the Bucks, 103-94.[27] Their 16-game winning streak came to an end when the Reggie Miller-led Indiana Pacers beat the Lakers, 111-102. It was their sixth loss of the season. Their seventh loss came against the Seattle Supersonics wherein Gary Payton led the Supersonics towards the win. Following their loss against the Supersonics, in the next 6 games, they have a record of 2 wins and 4 losses, and 3 of the 4 losses came on the road. Their last win for the month of January happened on January 28 wherein the Lakers defeated the visiting Bucks, 117-89.[28]

FebruaryEdit

They started the month of February with a 81-105 loss to the defending champions, San Antonio Spurs. The "Twin Towers" proved too much for the Lakers. O'Neal led the Lakers in scoring with 31 points.[29] The next game, the Lakers blows out the visiting Utah Jazz, 113-67. Shaquille O'Neal recorded 25 points, 6 rebounds and 5 blocks to lead the Lakers. It was the tied for the sixth highest point differential in Lakers franchise history.[30] [31] On February 9, the Lakers had another blowout win, this time against the visiting Timberwolves. O'Neal recorded 37 points, 16 rebounds and 4 blocks as the Lakers won 114-81.[32] On February 20, the Lakers escaped the Allen Iverson-led 76ers on the road, 87-84, thus winning their seventh straight game. O'Neal once again led the Lakers with 22 points, 16 rebounds, 9 assists and 4 blocks.[33] During their last game of February, O'Neal and Bryant recorded 55 points of the 90 Laker points as they led the Lakers towards their 12th straight win, escaping the home team, Portland Trailblazers, 90-87.[34]. They ended the month of February with a record of 12-1.

MarchEdit

On March 1, the Lakers defeated the visiting Vancouver Grizzlies, 103-91, thus winning their 13th straight win. Kobe Bryant led the Lakers in scoring with 27 points to go along with 6 rebounds and 3 assists.[35] Five days later, the Lakers were up against the Clippers, and they won their 16th straight win, 123-103. O'Neal recorded a career-high 61 points to go along with 23 rebounds and 3 assists for the Lakers. They also have won their 50th game of the season.[36] Three days after, Bryant and O'Neal combined for 59 points as they defeated the home team, Golden State Warriors, 109-92, to extend their winning streak to 17 in a row.[37] With that win, the Lakers now have their second longest winning streak in franchise history, after beating their winning streak earlier in the season when they won 16 in a row. They also won 16 in a row back in January to February 1991. On March 12, their winning streak were nearly snapped as they overcame a 12-point deficit against the visiting Sacramento Kings. The Lakers won 109-106. Bryant recorded 40 points, 10 rebounds and 8 assists and O'Neal added 39 points, 20 rebounds and 5 assists.[38] The very next day, O'Neal, Bryant and Rice combined for 82 points as they extend their winning streak to 19 games as they defeat the home team, the Denver Nuggets, 118-108.[39] Their 19-game winning streak was the longest in the NBA for four years when the 1995-96 Bulls won 18 in a row. Their 19-game winning streak ended when they were defeated by the home team, Washington Wizards, 102-109, despite O'Neal's 40 points and 12 rebounds for the Lakers.[40] They got back in the winning column, as they blown out the home team, the Detroit Pistons, 110-82. In that game, they've won their 54th game of the season. O'Neal led the Lakers with 35 points and 11 rebounds.[41] O'Neal again led the Lakers as he recorded 43 points and 10 rebounds as they won again, 92-85, against the home team, New York Knicks.[42] On March 20, O'Neal and Rice combined for 56 of the 100 Lakers points as they got the road win in Miami, 100-89. Bryant also added 23 points and 5 rebounds for the Lakers.[43] On March 26, in a road game against the Sacramento Kings, the Kings jumped out on an early lead, leading the Lakers 50-47 by the end of the first half. However, the Lakers outscored the Kings, 43-37, in the second half, thus winning the game, 90-89. The Lakers now have won their sixth straight game.[44] In their last game for the month of March, the Lakers defeated the visiting 76ers, 100-88. O'Neal led the Lakers with 37 points, 14 rebounds, 5 assists and 8 blocks. The Lakers now have won their 61st game of the season, the first time they have won over 61 games for over a decade.[45] They ended the month of March with a 15-1 win record, only losing to the Washington Wizards.

AprilEdit

Their first game on April was against the visiting Knicks. O'Neal led the Lakers with 34 points, 12 rebounds, 4 assists and 5 blocks as the Lakers captured their 62nd win of the season, 106-82.[46] On April 5, O'Neal recorded 49 points and 13 rebounds as the Lakers recorded their 64th win of the season as they won on the road, 111-104, against the home team, Golden State Warriors.[47] On April 10, the Lakers captured their 65th win of the season, behind Kobe Bryant's 33 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assist performance for the Lakers, as they escaped the visiting SuperSonics, 106-103. Their 65 wins have matched their 2nd highest win total for a single season in franchise history, matching the 1986-87 Lakers season. [48] Their 67th win of the season came in a 101-95 win over the visiting Timberwolves. O'Neal once again led the Lakers with 33 points, 14 rebounds and 8 assists.[49]

Game logEdit

Pre-seasonEdit

Regular seasonEdit

1999–2000 game log
Total: 67–15 (Home: 36–5; Road: 31–10)
1999–00 season schedule

PlayoffsEdit

2000 playoff game log
Total: 15–8 (Home: 11–2; Road: 4–6)
1999–00 season schedule

PlayoffsEdit

Western Conference First RoundEdit

(1) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (8) Sacramento Kings Last Playoff Meeting: 1984 Western Conference First Round (Los Angeles won 3-0; Kings were in Kansas City, Missouri)

April 23
Sacramento Kings 107, Los Angeles Lakers 117
Staples Center, Los Angeles
April 27
Sacramento Kings 89, Los Angeles Lakers 113
Staples Center, Los Angeles
May 5
Sacramento Kings 86, Los Angeles Lakers 113
Los Angeles wins series, 3-2
Staples Center, Los Angeles

Western Conference SemifinalsEdit

(1) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (5) Phoenix Suns Last Playoff Meeting: 1993 Western Conference First Round (Phoenix won 3-2)

May 7
Phoenix Suns 77, Los Angeles Lakers 105
Staples Center, Los Angeles
May 10
Phoenix Suns 96, Los Angeles Lakers 97
Staples Center, Los Angeles
May 16
Phoenix Suns 65, Los Angeles Lakers 87
Los Angeles wins series, 4-1
Staples Center, Los Angeles

Western Conference FinalsEdit

(1) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (3) Portland Trail Blazers Last Playoff Meeting: 1998 Western Conference First Round (Los Angeles won 3-1)

June 4
Portland Trail Blazers 84, Los Angeles Lakers 89
Los Angeles wins series, 4-3
Staples Center, Los Angeles

NBA FinalsEdit

  • Lakers' backup center John Salley became the first player in NBA history to play on three different championship-winning franchises, as he won titles in 1989 and '90 with the Detroit Pistons and 1996 with the Chicago Bulls.
  • This was the Lakers first NBA Finals in the new Staples Center.
  • After closing out game 6, fans rioted outside Staples Center by making bonfires, tipping cars, breaking windows of cars and buildings, and vandalizing businesses around the area. Overall, they caused $1 million in damages. In Lakers' championship run the following year, the LAPD came out in bigger force after the Lakers won and prevented the same thing from happening again.
  • Staples Center, which was a first-year building in 2000, had a very tricky shooting background and opposing teams often had difficulty shooting there. Pacers coach Larry Bird wanted to have a shoot-around in the arena the day before Game 6 to help his team shoot more consistently because they shot very poorly in Games 1 and 2. However, the Pacers couldn't practice in the building because of an Arena Football game. Bird was very upset about this, and his team had to go down to the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo.
  • The two arenas in this series, Conseco Fieldhouse and Staples Center, were both first-year arenas.

SummaryEdit

The following scoring summary is written in a line score format, except that the quarter numbers are replaced by game numbers.

Team Game 1 Game 2 Game 3 Game 4* Game 5 Game 6 Wins
Los Angeles (West) 104 111 91 120 87 116 4
Indiana (East) 87 104 100 118 120 111 2

[50]

AspectsEdit

Although the Lakers were one of the more talented teams in the NBA the previous year, they failed to win a single game against the San Antonio Spurs in the 1999 NBA playoffs. Twenty-four days after being swept by the eventual league champion, the Lakers signed Phil Jackson as head coach. Jackson, famous for coaching Michael Jordan and the six-time champion Chicago Bulls, would build his triangle offense around Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant. General Manager Jerry West surrounded O'Neal and Bryant with effective role players such as Glen Rice, Ron Harper (who had experience with Jackson's triangle offense as part of the '96–'98 Bulls),[51] and A. C. Green (member of the last two Lakers championship teams).[52]

Along with these starters, the Lakers also possessed a strong bench. Robert Horry not only had championship experience with the Houston Rockets but also was a threat on the perimeter and a defensive star.[53] Derek Fisher was a defensively minded point-guard with the ability to shoot well from long range. Rick Fox, acquired after being released by the Boston Celtics,[54] was the Lakers' sixth man. With a healthy O'Neal, the Lakers dominated the regular season, with winning streaks of 11, 16, and 19 en route to a 67–15 record, tying the 1992 Chicago Bulls and 1986 Boston Celtics as the fifth best record in NBA regular season history.

Although many expected the Lakers to reach the Finals, the road would be a rocky one. In the first round, the Lakers won the first two games against the Sacramento Kings, only to drop the next two games in Sacramento.[55] The Lakers then defeated Sacramento in Game 5, 113–86, to face the Phoenix Suns in the conference semifinals.[56] The Lakers clobbered the Suns, winning the series 4–1 (with their only loss coming in Game 4).[57][58] In Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals against the Portland Trail Blazers, Rasheed Wallace earned two technical fouls and was ejected; the Lakers took advantage of Wallace's absence and secured victory.[59] The Trail Blazers stormed back in the next game, giving the Lakers their worst home loss of the season in a 106–77 shellacking.[60] This setback did not affect Los Angeles, as they assembled a 3–1 series lead by winning the next two games in Portland.[61] The Lakers underestimated the Trail Blazers, however. Led by former Jackson linchpin Scottie Pippen, Portland won back-to-back elimination games and forced a series-deciding Game 7.[62][63] Amid several controversial foul calls by referee Dick Bavetta against members of the Trail Blazers,[64] Portland relinquished a 75–60 fourth quarter lead.[65] Rallying back with a 25–4 run, the Lakers won the game and secured a berth in the NBA Finals.[66][67]

In the 1997–1998 NBA season, the Chicago Bulls narrowly defeated the Pacers, 4 games to 3, in the Eastern Conference Finals.[68] The 1998–1999 NBA season began with a lockout but saw Indiana return to the Eastern Conference Finals, where they fell to the New York Knicks.[69] The 1999–2000 NBA season brought several major changes to the Pacers. It was their first season at Conseco Fieldhouse,[70] as well as their first since 1993 without center Antonio Davis, who was traded for the rights to the No. 5 overall pick in the 1999 NBA Draft.[71] Jalen Rose replaced Chris Mullin in the starting line up, winning the NBA Most Improved Player award,[72] while Austin Croshere replaced him as the sixth man.[73]

The Pacers started the season 7–7 but eventually finished with an Eastern Conference best 56–26 record, including a franchise-best 25 game win streak at home.[74] The Pacers, like the Lakers, struggled in the playoffs. They needed a clutch Travis Best three-pointer to dispatch the Milwaukee Bucks in five games.[75] Indiana faced the Philadelphia 76ers in the second round and took the series in six games, earning a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals.[76] The Pacers would face their rival Knicks,[77] winning a memorable six game series in a reversal of fortunes from years past.[78] With the victory, Indiana advanced to the first NBA Finals in franchise history, becoming the second former ABA team to do so.

Game 1Edit

Wednesday, June 7, 2000, 9:00 at the Staples Center.

The Lakers dominated from the start. The Lakers shot 15-for-20 (75%) in the first period while the Pacers shot only 7-for-20 (35%). Miller would miss all of his shots in the first quarter to give the Lakers a 15-point lead. Croshere came off the bench to keep the Pacers alive in the 2nd quarter, scoring 9 points and grabbing 4 rebounds in the quarter. Although the Pacers attempted a comeback in the 2nd quarter, they were still down by 12. In the 3rd quarter, it would be Jackson who led the Pacers to a comeback, cutting the Lakers lead by 2. Miller also hit his first field goal in the 3rd quarter, though it would be his last. The Lakers handled the Pacers in the final quarter, with a 13–2 run winning by 17 points. O'Neal scored 43 points and grabbed 19 rebounds.

[1]

Team 1st Qt. 2nd Qt. 3rd Qt. 4th Qt. Total
Indiana 18 22 28 16 87
Los Angeles 33 25 22 27 104

Game 2Edit

Friday, June 9, 2000, 9:00 at the Staples Center.

Los Angeles and Indiana were evenly matched for the first quarter, both scoring 28. However, Los Angeles suffered a major setback when Kobe Bryant left the game in the 2nd quarter due to a sprained ankle and did not return. Jalen Rose later admitted that he intentionally stuck out his foot when Kobe shot a jumpshot in order to trip him when he landed.[79][80][81] Ron Harper went in for Bryant and scored 21 points for the game. Desperate to try to gain the lead, Larry Bird resorted to the "Hack-a-Shaq" strategy. Shaq shot 39 free throws, making only 18, an NBA record for most free throws attempted. Despite this low percentage, Shaq made 9 of 16 in the 4th quarter to keep a Lakers lead. The Pacers cut the lead to 99–96 and were looking to foul Shaq, but when Shaq got the ball he passed to Robert Horry who converted not only the layup, but the foul shot as well giving them a 102–96 lead en route to a 111–104 Lakers victory.

[2]

Team 1st Qt. 2nd Qt. 3rd Qt. 4th Qt. Total
Indiana 28 21 20 35 104
Los Angeles 28 24 21 38 111

Game 3Edit

Thursday, June 11, 2000, 7:30 at the Conseco Fieldhouse.

Taking advantage of Kobe Bryant's ankle injury, Indiana restored a semblance of parity to the proceedings. Kobe's absence was felt as the Pacers had an 11–2 run in the first quarter to take an 8-point lead. Austin Croshere once again had another huge 2nd quarter, scoring 8 points as the Pacers shot 61% from the field. The Lakers tried to make a run to get back into the game, but upon doings so, Indiana answered with 12 straight points and led by 17. The Lakers were desperate and attempted another run to get within 3 points, but Reggie Miller nailed all his free throws at the end of the game to give Indiana a 9-point win.

[3]

Team 1st Qt. 2nd Qt. 3rd Qt. 4th Qt. Total
Los Angeles 15 27 24 25 91
Indiana 23 30 26 21 100

Game 4Edit

Wednesday, June 14, 2000, 9:00 at the Conseco Fieldhouse.

The Pacers took a quick 9–2 lead due to Rik Smits hitting his first four shots. Kobe Bryant attempted to play with his sore ankle but only managed to score 6 points in the first half. Even though Bryant and O'Neal were in foul trouble in the first half (each picking up his third with 5 minutes remaining in the second quarter), Indiana could not take advantage and did not extend their lead. This would be a problem as Kobe Bryant scored 10 points and the Lakers took a 62–60 lead due to a Glen Rice three-pointer. The game remained close going into the fourth quarter, when O'Neal and Reggie Miller scored 14 and 13 points respectively, sending the game into overtime. Midway through overtime, O'Neal committed his sixth foul but 21-year-old Bryant delivered three clutch shots, as the Lakers were able to overcome back-up center John Salley's inability to effectively defend Smits. Smits and Miller scored all 14 of Indiana's OT points, but it was not enough to overcome as Miller missed a last-second three-pointer, and L.A. was able to pull one out in Indianapolis.

[4]

Team 1st Qt. 2nd Qt. 3rd Qt. 4th Qt. OT Total
Los Angeles 23 28 29 24 16 120
Indiana 33 21 23 27 14 118

Game 5Edit

Sunday, June 16, 2000, 9:00 at the Conseco Fieldhouse.

Reggie Miller and the Pacers dominated the game from the start in what would be Larry Bird's last game as a coach in the state of Indiana. Reggie Miller came out and made 5 straight shots including a 4-point play. The Pacers hit their first 6 three point shots in the game. The Pacers would have a 20-point lead in the 2nd quarter, and eventually won by 33 – it was the worst Lakers NBA Finals loss since the 148–114 loss to Boston in the 1985 NBA Finals, known as the "Memorial Day Massacre."

With their loss in Game 5, the Lakers record in close-out games dropped to 3–6 in the 2000 NBA Playoffs (the other losses coming in Games 3 and 4 in the first round against Sacramento, Game 4 in the series against Phoenix, and Games 5 and 6 versus Portland). As a result, the series returned to California.

[5]

Team 1st Qt. 2nd Qt. 3rd Qt. 4th Qt. Total
Los Angeles 28 17 22 20 87
Indiana 39 25 22 34 120

Game 6Edit

Monday, June 19, 2000, 9:00 at the Staples Center.

After the two teams traded blows in the first quarter, Mark Jackson concluded the period with a turn-around half-court shot at the buzzer to give the Pacers a 26–24 advantage. They would not relinquish their lead until the fourth quarter. In the first half, the Pacers would lead by as many as twelve points. However, the Lakers chipped away and entered intermission trailing 56–53. Indiana, however, added two more points to their lead, and entered the final period in a position to force a decisive seventh game.

In the fourth quarter, the momentum shifted. The Lakers got four timely three-pointers from Derek Fisher, Robert Horry, and Rick Fox. The turning point occurred on a play where Brian Shaw stole the ball from Jalen Rose, leading to a fast break where Shaquille O'Neal hit an off-balance shot to give the Lakers the lead. The Pacers never led after that point.

The Lakers would build a seven-point lead, but the Pacers fought back to tie the score at 103. After a timeout, the Lakers scored six unanswered points to regain control. The Pacers made one final valiant effort, but it fell short and the Lakers clinched their first championship in twelve years. Shaquille O'Neal led all scorers with 41 points and also pulled down 12 rebounds. He was awarded the Finals MVP.[82]

[6]

Team 1st Qt. 2nd Qt. 3rd Qt. 4th Qt. Total
Indiana 26 30 28 27 111
Los Angeles 24 29 26 37 116

Player statisticsEdit

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game

SeasonEdit

Player GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
Kobe Bryant 66 62 38.2 .468 .319 .821 6.3 4.9 1.61 .94 22.5
John Celestand 16 0 11.6 .333 .222 .833 .7 1.2 .44 .00 2.3
Derek Fisher 78 22 23.1 .346 .313 .724 1.8 2.8 1.03 .04 6.3
Rick Fox 82 1 18.0 .414 .326 .808 2.4 1.7 .63 .32 6.5
Devean George 49 1 7.0 .389 .340 .659 1.5 .2 .20 .08 3.2
A. C. Green 82 82 23.5 .447 .250 .695 5.9 1.0 .65 .22 5.0
Ron Harper 80 78 25.5 .399 .311 .680 4.2 3.4 1.06 .49 7.0
Robert Horry 76 0 22.2 .438 .309 .788 4.8 1.6 1.11 1.05 5.7
Sam Jacobson 3 0 6.0 .556 .000 .000 .3 .7 .33 .00 3.3
Travis Knight 63 0 6.5 .390 .000 .607 2.0 .4 .10 .37 1.7
Tyronn Lue 8 0 18.2 .487 .500 .750 1.5 2.1 .38 .00 6.0
Shaquille O'Neal 79 79 40.0 .574 .000 .524 13.6 3.8 .46 3.03 29.7
Glen Rice 80 80 31.6 .430 .367 .874 4.1 2.2 .59 .15 15.9
John Salley 45 3 6.7 .362 .000 .750 1.4 .6 .18 .31 1.6
Brian Shaw 74 2 16.9 .382 .310 .759 2.9 2.7 .47 .19 4.1

PlayoffsEdit

Player GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
Kobe Bryant 22 22 39.0 .442 .344 .754 4.5 4.4 1.45 1.45 21.1
Derek Fisher 21 0 15.3 .430 .414 .760 1.0 2.0 .52 .05 4.7
Rick Fox 23 0 14.4 .452 .462 .762 1.7 1.2 .39 .00 4.3
Devean George 9 0 5.0 .368 .200 .545 1.1 .2 .11 .00 2.4
A. C. Green 23 23 18.7 .411 .000 .696 4.2 .6 .61 .13 3.9
Ron Harper 23 23 28.0 .431 .231 .702 3.7 3.2 1.00 .57 8.6
Robert Horry 23 0 26.9 .407 .288 .702 5.3 2.5 .87 .83 7.6
Travis Knight 14 0 3.4 .533 .000 .333 .4 .0 .07 .21 1.3
Shaquille O'Neal 23 23 43.5 .566 .000 .456 15.4 3.1 .57 2.39 30.7
Glen Rice 23 23 33.3 .408 .418 .798 4.0 2.1 .65 .17 12.4
John Salley 18 0 4.3 .385 .000 .700 1.2 .2 .06 .33 .9
Brian Shaw 22 1 18.5 .421 .333 .813 2.3 3.0 .50 .18 5.4

Award winnersEdit

TransactionsEdit

The Lakers have been involved in the following transactions during the 1999–2000 season.

TradesEdit

September 1, 1999
To Los Angeles Lakers
A. C. Green
To Dallas Mavericks
Sean Rooks
2000 2nd round draft pick
September 21, 1999
To Los Angeles Lakers
Melvin Levett
To Detroit Pistons
Derek Harper

Briefly, the Lakers considered to trade Kobe Bryant for Grant Hill, but it never came close to consummation.[83]

AdditionsEdit

Player Signed Former Team
Ron Harper Signed 2-year contract for $4.2 Million[84] Chicago Bulls
Brian Shaw Signed 1-year contract for $? Million[85] Portland Trail Blazers
John Salley Signed ? year contract for $? Million[86] N/A

SubtractionsEdit

Player Reason Left New Team
Ruben Patterson Free agent Seattle SuperSonics
J. R. Reid Free agent Milwaukee Bucks

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