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1987-88 season »

1986-87 Season The Lakers won an NBA title this season

Record: 65-17, first place in Pacific Division

The Lakers made a key trade during the season, when on Feb. 13 they sent Frank Brickowski, Petur Gudmundsson, a 1987 first-round draft pick (Greg Anderson) and a 1990 second-round draft pick (Sean Higgins) to the San Antonio Spurs for Mychal Thompson.

Now the focal point of the offense, Magic Johnson won his first NBA Most Valuable Player Award while leading the Lakers to the second-best record in franchise history. Michael Cooper was named NBA Defensive Player of the Year.

Playoffs: The Lakers and Celtics matched up again in the NBA Finals, in what turned out to be the finals Lakers-Celtics matchup of the Showtime era. The Lakers routed Boston in the first two games, the Celtics won Game 3 and seemed poised to win Game 4 before Johnson's memorable "baby sky-hook" in the middle of the lane with time running out game the Lakers a 107-106 victory in Game 4. The Lakers wrapped up the title in six games, and Johnson was named the NBA Finals MVP Award.

There was one more memorable moment left in the season, however. After the Lakers' championship parade, Coach Pat Riley guaranteed to the fans in attendance and those watching at home on TV that the Lakers would repeat as NBA champions in 1987-88. Riley planned the statement in advance and used it as a motivating tool throughout the following season.

Playoff Results


Western Conference first round


  • at Lakers 129, Denver 95

  • at Lakers 139, Denver 127

  • Lakers 140, at Denver 103



Western Conference semifinals


  • at Lakers 125, Golden State 116

  • at Lakers 116, Golden State 101

  • Lakers 133, at Golden State 108

  • at Golden State 129, Lakers 121

  • at Lakers 118, Golden State 106




Western Conference finals


  • at Lakers 92, Seattle 87

  • at Lakers 112, Seattle 104

  • Lakers 122, at Seattle 121

  • Lakers 133, at Seattle 102



NBA Finals


  • at Lakers 126, Boston 113

  • at Lakers 141, Boston 122

  • at Boston 109, Lakers 103

  • Lakers 107, at Boston 106

  • at Boston 123, Lakers 108

  • at Lakers 106, Boston 93



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