Game #1 @New York
The Knicks jumped out to a huge first half lead but had to rally late to pull out the win. They lead by 20 points in the second quarter before L.A. rallied to within 65-54 at the half. Jerry West made only two of eight shots before the break but the Lakers stayed in it behind the rebounding of Wilt Chamberlain and Elgin Baylor. West did get to the line 17 times and got Walt Frazier into foul trouble and limited him to 30 minutes. Los Angeles used a huge third quarter run, fueled by West's 16 points, to take a three point lead entering the final quarter. A key move late was when Red Holzman sent Cazzie Russell in for Bill Bradley. Russell, who had been firing blanks, came in smoking in the fourth and his jumper gave New York a 99-98 and then beat Chamberlain to the hoop for a layup. New York would outscore L.A. 31-12 to close out the game. Frazier did come up big late despite his foul trouble. With New York nursing a one-point lead, Frazier stole the ball, laid it in and drew a foul. He missed the free throw but Willis Reed tapped the ball out to Dave DeBusschere who knocked down a jumper to give New York a five-point lead.
Game #2 @New York
The Lakers prevailed in a nip-and-tuck game to even the series at one game apiece. Neither team could pull away from the other and, this time, the Knicks who could not convert the key hoops. Los Angeles led by four after the first quarter while the game was tied at the half and after three periods. New York pulled out to a 90-84 lead in the fourth but L.A. came back behind Wilt Chamberlain and Jerry West to pull even at 101. Dick Garrett put L.A. ahead 103-101 with a jumper from the corner. With 46 seconds left, Chamberlain blocked a Willis Reed drive but Frazier recovered the ball. Frazier found Dave DeBusschere but he missed as well. Stallworth was called for three seconds after he got caught in the lane with the offensive rebound with 18 seconds left. Los Angeles hit two free throws before New York cut it back to two at 105-103 with five seconds left. Reed then stole a pass from Garrett and Dick Barnett had a 20-footer to send the game into overtime but it bounced off the rim.
Game #3 @Los Angeles
The Knicks survived one of the most improbable, famous shots in Finals history to take a 2-1 series lead despite a triple-double from Elgin Baylor. After falling way behind early, New York trailed by 14 at the half when Keith Erickson nailed a 25-foot shot at the buzzer. New York rallied to tie the game 100 with less than a minute play. Then Dick Barnett fed Dave DeBusschere who hit a shot to give New York a 102-100 lead with three seconds left and L.A. out of timeouts. Wilt Chamberlain tossed the ball to Jerry West who then proceeded to launch a shot from backcourt. The improbable 55-footer found nothing but the bottom of the net to send the game into overtime. Los Angeles led 105-104 in the extra session before DeBusschere blocked a Baylor shot then scored off a Mike Riordan assist. He then nailed a long jumper to make it 108-105 New York. The Lakers rallied but Dick Barnett hit a 10-foot jumper to clinch the win.
Game #4 @Los Angeles
The Lakers avoided a 3-1 deficit despite almost losing in regulation. New York came out hot as they hit nine of their first 11 shots. Los Angeles rallied by Jerry West, Elgin Baylor and Johnny Egan. Egan came in and scored six points to help L.A. establish a 54-47 lead. The Lakers had a chance to put the Knicks away in the third but couldn't do it. New York went scoreless on 12 straight possessions at one point in the quarter (eight turnovers and four missed shots) but actually gained three points in the period and trailed by only four at the start of the final period. Walt Frazier scored 13 points in the second half to help pull them even at 99. New York had a chance to win it but Frazier's attempt at the buzzer would not go in. New York suffered when Bill Bradley and Dave DeBusschere fouled out in the overtime. Los Angeles got help from a surprise source in the person of John Tresvant. Tresvant, who hadn't played yet in the series, entered with 56 seconds in regulation and contributed three points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals in overtime. After West made it 105-103, Tresvant stole the ball and then converted two free throws. He then hit West with a long outlet for a score and came up with another steal, which led to a 111-103 lead.
Game #5 @New York
Los Angeles came out and hit 12 of their first 15 shots to take a 25-15 lead and maintained it throughout the first half. After trailing by 13 at the half, the Knicks pressure defense turned the tide in the second half. The Lakers would commit 30 turnovers in the game (19 of them in the second half) and Jerry West and Wilt Chamberlain would only get five shots and four points combined in the second half. Willis Reed went down injured in the first quarter and would not return, which left Dave Stallworth, Dave DeBusschere, Nate Bowman and Bill Hosket to play the final 40 minutes against Chamberlain. The pressure defense helped New York whittle the lead to 82-75 after three periods. In fact, L.A. would only get 22 field goal attempts in the second half. In the fourth, Cazzie Russell came off the bench to hit five shots in the period. Bill Bradley finally tied the game at 87, then put in another shot and New York would never trail again. The clincher was when Stallworth hit a short hook over Wilt to make it 103-96 with under two minutes to play. Despite Reed's absence, the Lakers could only outrebound New York 45-38.
Game #6 @Los Angeles
The Lakers tied the series at three games by demolishing the Knicks from the outset. Without Willis Reed, the Knicks weren't able to get the game to the wild, scatter paced tempo of game five. Dick Garrett hit seven straight shots in the first quarter as L.A. swamped New York 36-16 in the period. Chamberlain obliterated the Knicks this time around with 45 points and 27 rebounds and dominated the smaller Knicks as L.A. was never threatened.
Game #7 @New York
Willis Reed made his dramatic entrance before the game during warm-ups and the Knicks were never headed as they romped to a game seven win and their first NBA title. Reed hit two jumpers to give New York an early lead but it was the other starters who poured it on the Lakers. Walt Frazier, Bill Bradley and Dave DeBusschere hit 15 of their first 21 shots as New York built a 27-point halftime lead, 69-42. Frazier would score 23 points in the half and have his best all-around game in a Knick uniform. Frazier either made or assisted on 31 of New York's 46 field goals. The Knicks came out still smoking in the third and built their lead to 25 points at 79-54 with six minutes left. The lead would still be 25 in the fourth before L.A. would finally start hitting some of their shots. However, it was much too little, too late for the Lakers.
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