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1984 NBA Finals
Team Coach Wins
Boston Celtics K.C. Jones 4
Los Angeles Lakers Pat Riley 3
Dates: May 27–June 12
MVP: Larry Bird
(Boston Celtics)
Eastern Finals: Celtics defeated Bucks, 4–1
Western Finals: Lakers defeated Suns, 4–2

The 1984 NBA World Championship Series, also known as Showdown '84, was the championship round of the National Basketball Association (NBA)'s 1983–84 season, and the culmination of the season's playoffs.

The Eastern Conference champion Boston Celtics defeated the Western Conference champion Los Angeles Lakers in a seven-game Finals, winning Game 7 111–102. Celtics forward Larry Bird averaged 27 points and 14 rebounds a game during the series, earning the NBA Finals Most Valuable Player (MVP). Bird was also named the league's regular-season MVP for that year.

This series was the long-awaited rematch of the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics after their rivalry was revived in 1979 with the Magic JohnsonLarry Bird pair entering the league. After the Lakers won Game 1, a crucial steal in Game 2 led to a tie game and the Celtics were able to win in overtime to tie the series. The Lakers won Game 3 easily and almost won Game 4, but were again thwarted. Now tied 2–2, the Lakers and Celtics each held serve at their home court to send the series to Boston for Game 7. Game 5 was a classic, with Bird coming up with a huge game in one of the hottest games ever (97 °F (36 °C)) in the non-air conditioned Boston Garden. Game 7 was also contested in hot temperatures that hovered around 91 °F (33 °C). The score was close but the contest eventually went to the Celtics. Cedric Maxwell scored 24 points against the Los Angeles Lakers in the decisive Game 7 victory. It marked the Celtics' eighth consecutive victory over the Lakers in the NBA Finals.

Los Angeles won all three games played on Sunday afternoons. Boston won the games played on Tuesday night, Wednesday night, Thursday night, and Friday night.

The Series schedule was odd due to the television schedule. Game One was played on a Sunday afternoon in Boston, about 36 hours after the Lakers had eliminated the Phoenix Suns in the Western Finals. The teams then had three-plus days off, not playing until Thursday night. Then, after Game 3 on Sunday afternoon in Los Angeles, the teams had two-plus days off, not playing again until Wednesday night. That in turn started a wearying back-and-forth across the country, Wednesday night at LA, Friday night at Boston, Sunday afternoon at LA, and Tuesday night at Boston, to end the series.

The following year, the Finals format switched to 2–3–2, where Games 1, 2, 6, and 7 were hosted by the team with the best record. The change in format came after Red Auerbach complained about the constant traveling during the finals. The 2-2-1-1-1 format would return for the 2014 NBA Finals.

1984 NBA Playoffs

Los Angeles Lakers (Western Conference Champion) Boston Celtics (Eastern Conference Champion)
54–28 (.659)

1st Pacific, 1st West, 2nd Overall

Regular season 62–20 (.756)

1st Atlantic, 1st East, 1st Overall

Defeated the (8) Kansas City Kings, 3–0 First Round Defeated the (8) Washington Bullets, 3–1
Defeated the (4) Dallas Mavericks, 4–1 Conference Semifinals Defeated the (5) New York Knicks, 4–3
Defeated the (6) Phoenix Suns, 4–2 Conference Finals Defeated the (2) Milwaukee Bucks, 4–1


Series summary

Game Date Home Team Result Away Team
Game 1 May 27 Boston 109–115 Los Angeles
Game 2 May 31 Boston 124–101 (OT) Los Angeles
Game 3 June 3 Los Angeles 137–104 Boston
Game 4 June 6 Los Angeles 125–129 (OT) Boston
Game 5 June 8 Boston 121–103 Los Angeles
Game 6 June 10 Los Angeles 119–108 Boston
Game 7 June 12 Boston 111–102 Los Angeles
Preceded by
1983
NBA Finals
1984
Succeeded by
1985
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