Basketball Wiki
2004–05 NBA season
League National Basketball Association
Sport Basketball
Duration November 2, 2004 – April 20, 2005
TV partner/s ABC, TNT, ESPN, NBA TV
Top draft pick Dwight Howard
Picked by Orlando Magic
Regular season
Season MVP Steve Nash (Phoenix)
Top scorer Allen Iverson (Philadelphia)
Eastern champions Detroit Pistons
Eastern runners-up Miami Heat
Western champions San Antonio Spurs
Western runners-up Phoenix Suns
Finals champions San Antonio Spurs
Runners-up Detroit Pistons
Finals MVP Tim Duncan (San Antonio)
NBA seasons

he 2004–05 NBA season was the 59th season of the National Basketball Association (NBA). It began on November 2, 2004 and ended June 23, 2005. The season ended with the San Antonio Spurs defeating the defending champions the Detroit Pistons 4–3 in the NBA Finals. Tim Duncan was the MVP for the third and final time in his career.

Notable occurrences

  • The NBA makes its return to Charlotte as the Charlotte Bobcats become the league's 30th franchise. They play their first season at the Charlotte Coliseum.
  • This season also makes the first year of the NBA's new divisional alignments, separating the league into six divisions of five teams instead of the previous four divisions of varying numbers of teams. As part of this realignment, the New Orleans Hornets move from the Eastern Conference to the Western Conference.
  • The 2005 NBA All-Star Game was played on February 20, 2005 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado, with the East winning 125–115. Philadelphia's Allen Iverson was named the MVP of the game.
  • During All-Star Weekend Quentin Richardson won the Three-point Shootout, Steve Nash won the Skills Challenge, and Diana Taurasi, Dan Majerle, and Shawn Marion won the Shooting Stars Competition—all Phoenix Suns victories. Amar'e Stoudemire made it to the final round of the Slam Dunk Contest, but failed to complete the sweep for the Suns.
  • Prior to the start of this season, Shaquille O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat after his reported fallout with former Laker teammate Kobe Bryant. Fans have sensed this, along with the Pistons championship, as a possible end of dominance by the Western Conference. They also witnessed the loss of head coach Phil Jackson and replacement Rudy Tomjanovich as the Lakers have missed out on the NBA playoffs for the fifth time in their history. However, the Western Conference has continued its domination in the regular season; since then all playoff-bound teams in the West have either won 50 or more games, or were above .500 at the end of the season, in contrast to the Eastern Conference, where on average, three teams have sub-.500 records.
  • During the offseason the Phoenix Suns signed unrestricted free agent Steve Nash. With the addition of coach Mike D'Antoni and his offensive-minded strategy combined with Nash's playmaking skills Phoenix went on to win 33 games more than year before. The Suns had the best overall record in the NBA, Nash won the MVP Award and D'Antoni won the Coach of the Year Award.
  • The Memphis Grizzlies have played their first game at FedExForum.
  • An early regular season game between Detroit and Indiana at The Palace of Auburn Hills was disrupted with 45.9 seconds to go as a major altercation broke out between players and fans. This resulted in record breaking suspensions, most notable of which was Ron Artest who received the longest suspension in NBA history (73 games plus the playoffs). The NBA also overhauled its league-wide security policy.
  • The Bulls make their first appearance in the playoffs since their 1998 championship season. The Bulls postseason berth followed an 0–9 start to the season with the Bulls having one of the youngest rosters in NBA history.
  • The Washington Wizards have made their first appearance in the playoffs since the team name changed for the 1997–98 season.
  • The Phoenix Suns started an unofficial league tradition of a mostly exposed hardwood floor, with a darker varnish on the outside of the three-point area. They also put their team website on the sideline, which other teams followed suit in the coming seasons.
  • The Seattle SuperSonics make the playoffs for the last time as a team from Seattle.
  • Ben Gordon won the Sixth Man Award, making him the first rookie to ever win the award.
  • The NBA Finals reaches seven games for the first time since 1994.
  • Orlando Magic rookie Dwight Howard became the first and only player straight out of high school to start all 82 games in his rookie season. He also became the youngest to average a double-double, the youngest to average 10 rebounds in a season, and the youngest to record at least 20 rebounds in a game. However, Charlotte Bobcats rookie Emeka Okafor won Rookie of the Year that season. While Okafor's career was respectable, Howard's career gradually skyrocketed into four All-Star appearances (to date), two Defensive Player of the Year awards, and four All-NBA Team selections.

Final standings

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division
Team W L PCT. GB
Boston Celtics-y (3) 45 37 .549 -
Philadelphia 76ers-x (7) 43 39 .524 2
New Jersey Nets-x (8) 42 40 .512 3
Toronto Raptors 33 49 .402 12
New York Knicks 33 49 .402 12
Central Division
Team W L PCT. GB
Detroit Pistons-y (2) 54 28 .659 -
Chicago Bulls-x (4) 47 35 .573 7
Indiana Pacers-x (6) 44 38 .537 10
Cleveland Cavaliers 42 40 .512 12
Milwaukee Bucks 30 52 .366 24
Southeast Division
Team W L PCT. GB
Miami Heat-z (1) 59 23 .720 -
Washington Wizards-x (5) 45 37 .549 14
Orlando Magic 36 46 .439 23
Charlotte Bobcats 18 64 .220 41
Atlanta Hawks 13 69 .159 46

Western Conference

Northwest Division
Team W L PCT. GB
Seattle SuperSonics-y (3) 52 30 .634 -
Denver Nuggets-x (7) 49 33 .598 3
Minnesota Timberwolves 44 38 .537 8
Portland Trail Blazers 27 55 .329 25
Utah Jazz 26 56 .317 26
Southwest Division
Team W L PCT. GB
San Antonio Spurs-y C (2) 59 23 .720 -
Dallas Mavericks-x (4) 58 24 .707 1
Houston Rockets-x (5) 51 31 .622 8
Memphis Grizzlies-x (8) 45 37 .549 14
New Orleans Hornets 18 64 .220 41
Pacific Division
Team W L PCT. GB
Phoenix Suns-z (1) 62 20 .756 -
Sacramento Kings-x (6) 50 32 .610 12
Los Angeles Clippers 37 45 .451 25
Los Angeles Lakers 34 48 .415 28
Golden State Warriors 34 48 .415 28
  • x - Clinched playoff spot.
  • y - Clinched division title.
  • z - Clinched top conference record.
  • (1) – (8) - Playoff seedings
  • C - NBA Champions

Statistics leaders

Category Player Team Stat
Points per game Allen Iverson Philadelphia 76ers 30.7
Rebounds per game Kevin Garnett Minnesota Timberwolves 13.5
Assists per game Steve Nash Phoenix Suns 11.5
Steals per game Larry Hughes Washington Wizards 2.9
Blocks per game Andrei Kirilenko Utah Jazz 3.3
FG% Shaquille O'Neal Miami Heat 60.0%
FT% Reggie Miller Indiana Pacers 93.3%
3FG% Fred Hoiberg Minnesota Timberwolves 48.3%

NBA awards