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1975 NBA Finals
Team Coach Wins
Golden State Warriors Al Attles 4
Washington Bullets K.C. Jones 0
Dates: May 18 - May 25
MVP: Rick Barry
(Golden State Warriors)
Television: CBS (U.S.)
Announcers: Brent Musburger and Oscar Robertson
Game 1: Earl Strom and Joe Gushue
Game 2: Darell Garrettson and Richie Powers
Game 3: Jake O'Donnell and Don Murphy
Game 4: Richie Powers and Manny Sokol
Hall of Famers: Rick Barry (1987)
Elvin Hayes (1990)
Wes Unseld (1988)
K.C. Jones (1989, player)
Eastern Finals: Bullets defeat Celtics, 4-2
Western Finals: Warriors defeat Bulls, 4-3
 < 1974 NBA Finals 1976 > 

The 1975 NBA World Championship Series was the championship round of the 1974-75 NBA season of the National Basketball Association. The Golden State Warriors (48-34) of the Western Conference played against the Washington Bullets (60-22) of the Eastern Conference. The series was played under a best-of-seven format.

The Warriors' home games were played at Cow Palace in San Francisco due to scheduling conflicts at their normal home court of Oakland Arena during the week of May 19-26. In addition, an odd scheduling format had to be used because Golden State could not secure Cow Palace for Memorial Day Weekend (May 24-26). A Sports Illustrated article about the series reported that Washington, which held home court advantage, was given the option of a 1-2-2-1-1 scheduling format due to Golden State's problems or, if they wished, opening on the road and then having Games 2, 3, and 4 at home. Washington opted for the 1-2-2-1-1 format not out of a sense of fairness, but because they wanted to open the series at home.[1]

The series is notable as it was the first championship game or series in any of the four North American major professional sports leagues to feature two African American head coaches or managers, as Al Attles coached the Warriors and K.C. Jones coached the Bullets.[2] On a lesser note, it was the first time that the NBA ever scheduled a game to be played in the month of June (Game Seven was scheduled for Monday Night, June 2). The first June game ever, however, would have to wait until 1976.

The underdog Warriors won four close games in a row to earn a sweep over the Bullets.


Series Summary

Game Date Result Site
Game 1 May 18 (Sun.) Golden State Warriors 101, Washington Bullets 95 @ Landover, Md.
Game 2 May 20 (Tue.) Golden State Warriors 92, Washington Bullets 91 @ San Francisco, Cal.
Game 3 May 22 (Fri.) Golden State Warriors 109, Washington Bullets 101 @ San Francisco, Cal.
Game 4 May 25 (Sun.) Golden State Warriors 96, Washington Bullets 95 @ Landover, Md.

Golden State Warriors defeated Washington Bullets, 4 games to 0.[3]

Game 1

Coming off a tough seven-game conference finals win over the Chicago Bulls, the Warriors were somewhat haggard, but built a 14-point lead in the first half over the Bullets at the Capital Centre. The Bullets began to storm back, but Phil Smith came off the bench to score 20 points in 31 minutes of playing time as Golden State took the first game, 101-95.

Game 2

Instead of their familiar Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, the Warriors were forced to play their first two scheduled home games of the series at the nearby Cow Palace (the Oakland facility being unavailable). The Bullets jumped to an early 13-point lead, but Golden State battled back, led by 36 points from Rick Barry, to take a 92-91 lead in the closing seconds. Washington got the ball back with six seconds left but missed two shots and now were down 2-0.

Game 3

Rick Barry poured in 38 points and backup center George Johnson had 10 points and nine rebounds off the bench to help the Warriors to a key Game 3 109-101 win.

Two major factors enabling the Warriors to take an insurmountable lead were the defensive play of the seemingly undersized Jamaal Wilkes on Bullets' power forward Elvin Hayes and the play of the Warrior bench. In three games, Hayes had only 29 points and the Warriors' bench players had outscored the Bullets' reserves 115-53.

Game 4

Back at home, the Bullets seemed to be on their way to staving off an unexpected sweep by the underdog Warriors, leading by 14 points early on. Bullets forward Mike Riordan was assigned to guard Rick Barry, who had killed the Bullets in the series up to that point by averaging 35 points a game. Riordan played Barry very physical, arousing the ire of Warriors' coach Al Attles. Midway through the first quarter, Barry went on a drive to the basket and was fouled hard from behind by Riordan. Barry reacted with a shove, but Attles bolted onto the court and initiated a fight of his own with Riordan, thereby protecting his star player from an ejection and getting ejected himself.

After the brawl, Barry immediately went on a scoring tear, but had to endure boos and taunts from the Capital Centre crowd. His performance, along with the Warriors' pressure defense, brought them back and guard Butch Beard scored the last seven points of the game, including two free throws to make the final score 96-95.

Team rosters

See also

External links




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