1998 NBA Playoffs

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The 1998 NBA Playoffs was the postseason tournament of the National Basketball Association's 1997-98 season. The tournament concluded with the Eastern Conference champion Chicago Bulls defeating the Western Conference champion Utah Jazz 4 games to 2 in the NBA Finals. The Bulls also achieved a second 3-peat, a feat unrivaled since the Boston Celtics in 1966. The 1998 playoffs was the last involving the Jordan-led Bulls (They did not return until 2005). Michael Jordan was named NBA Finals MVP for the 6th and final time.

The Indiana Pacers took the Bulls to the limit in the Eastern Conference Finals, becoming 1 of only 2 teams to force a Game 7 in the Bulls' title years (the Knicks achieved this in 1992). This team was later named by Pacers.com as the greatest in franchise history, even better than the 2000 team that won the Eastern Conference Title, primary due to the record.

The New Jersey Nets made the playoffs for the first time since 1994, but did not appear again until 2002. Their presence was a mere asterisk compared to what they accomplished in 2002, getting swept by the eventual champion Bulls.

The Cleveland Cavaliers lost to the Pacers in the first round 3–1 and did not appear again until 2006.

Bracket[edit]

First Round Conference Semifinals Conference Finals NBA Finals
                       
1 Utah 3
8 Houston 2
1 Utah 4
5 San Antonio 1
4 Phoenix 1
5 San Antonio 3
1 Utah 4
Western Conference
3 L.A. Lakers 0
3 L.A. Lakers 3
6 Portland 1
3 L.A. Lakers 4
2 Seattle 1
2 Seattle 3
7 Minnesota 2
W1 Utah 2
E1 Chicago 4
1 Chicago 3
8 New Jersey 0
1 Chicago 4
4 Charlotte 1
4 Charlotte 3
5 Atlanta 1
1 Chicago 4
Eastern Conference
3 Indiana 3
3 Indiana 3
6 Cleveland 1
3 Indiana 4
7 New York 1
2 Miami 2
7 New York 3

Playoff qualifying[edit]

Western Conference[edit]

Home court advantage[edit]

The Utah Jazz and Chicago Bulls tied for the best record in the NBA. However, Utah won the season series 2–0 and was awarded home court advantage throughout the playoffs.

Clinched a playoff berth[edit]

The following teams clinched a playoff berth in the West:

  1. Utah Jazz (clinched Midwest division)
  2. Seattle SuperSonics (clinched Pacific division)
  3. Los Angeles Lakers
  4. Phoenix Suns
  5. San Antonio Spurs
  6. Portland Trail Blazers
  7. Minnesota Timberwolves
  8. Houston Rockets

Eastern Conference[edit]

Best record in conference[edit]

The Chicago Bulls clinched the best record in the East, and earned home court advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Clinched a playoff berth[edit]

The following teams clinched a playoff berth in the East:

  1. Chicago Bulls (clinched Central division)
  2. Miami Heat (clinched Atlantic division)
  3. Indiana Pacers
  4. Charlotte Hornets
  5. Atlanta Hawks
  6. Cleveland Cavaliers
  7. New York Knicks
  8. New Jersey Nets

Western Conference[edit]

Champion: Utah Jazz

First Round[edit]

(1) Utah Jazz vs. (8) Houston Rockets[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1997 Western Conference Finals (Utah won 4–2)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(UTA-HOU)

Venue Box score Television
1 April 23 Utah 90 Houston 103 0–1 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 1 TBS 9:30et
2 April 25 Utah 105 Houston 90 1–1 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 2 TNT 10:30et
3 April 29 Houston 89 Utah 85 1–2 Compaq Center, Houston, Texas 3 TBS 9:30et
4 May 1 Houston 71 Utah 93 2–2 Compaq Center, Houston, Texas 4 TNT 9:30et
5 May 3 Utah 84 Houston 70 3–2 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 5 NBC 3:00et
Utah wins series 3–2

Game 5 is Clyde Drexler's final NBA game.

(4) Phoenix Suns vs. (5) San Antonio Spurs[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1996 Western Conference First Round (San Antonio won 3–1)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(PHO-SAS)

Venue Box score Television
1 April 23 Phoenix 96 San Antonio 102 0–1 America West Arena, Phoenix, Arizona 1 TNT 10:30et
2 April 25 Phoenix 108 San Antonio 101 1–1 America West Arena, Phoenix, Arizona 2 NBC 3:30et
3 April 27 San Antonio 100 Phoenix 88 1–2 Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas 3 TNT 9:30et
4 April 29 San Antonio 99 Phoenix 80 1–3 Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas 4 TBS 8:00et
San Antonio wins series 3–1

(2) Seattle SuperSonics vs. (7) Minnesota Timberwolves[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: This is the first meeting between the SuperSonics and Timberwolves.

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(SEA-MIN)

Venue Box score Television
1 April 24 Seattle 108 Minnesota 83 1–0 KeyArena, Seattle, Washington 1 TBS 9:30et
2 April 26 Seattle 93 Minnesota 98 1–1 KeyArena, Seattle, Washington 2 TNT 9:00et
3 April 28 Minnesota 98 Seattle 90 1–2 Target Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota 3 TBS 9:30et
4 April 30 Minnesota 88 Seattle 92 2–2 Target Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota 4 TBS 9:30et
5 May 2 Seattle 97 Minnesota 84 3–2 KeyArena, Seattle, Washington 5 NBC 3:30et
Seattle wins series 3–2

(3) Los Angeles Lakers vs. (6) Portland Trail Blazers[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1997 Western Conference First Round (Los Angeles won 3–1)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(LAL-POR)

Venue Box score Television
1 April 24 Los Angeles 104 Portland 102 1–0 Great Western Forum, Los Angeles, California 1 TNT 10:30et
2 April 26 Los Angeles 108 Portland 99 2–0 Great Western Forum, Los Angeles, California 2 NBC 3:00et
3 April 28 Portland 99 Los Angeles 94 2–1 Rose Garden, Portland, Oregon 3 TNT 10:30et
4 April 30 Portland 99 Los Angeles 110 3–1 Rose Garden, Portland, Oregon 4 TNT 10:30et
Los Angeles wins series 3–1

Conference Semifinals[edit]

(1) Utah Jazz vs. (5) San Antonio Spurs[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1996 Western Conference Semifinals (Utah won 4–2)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(UTA-SAS)

Venue Box score Television
1 May 5 Utah 83 San Antonio 82 1–0 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 1 TNT 10:30et
2 May 7 Utah 109 San Antonio 106 2–0 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 2 TNT 10:30et
3 May 9 San Antonio 86 Utah 64 2–1 Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas 3 NBC 3:30et
4 May 10 San Antonio 73 Utah 82 3–1 Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas 4 TNT 9:00et
5 May 12 Utah 87 San Antonio 77 4–1 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 5 TNT 8:00et
Utah wins series 4–1

(2) Seattle SuperSonics vs. (3) Los Angeles Lakers[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1995 Western Conference First Round (Los Angeles won 3–1)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(SEA-LAL)

Venue Box score Television
1 May 4 Seattle 106 Los Angeles 92 1–0 KeyArena, Seattle, Washington 1 TNT 9:00et
2 May 6 Seattle 68 Los Angeles 92 1–1 KeyArena, Seattle, Washington 2 TNT 10:30et
3 May 8 Los Angeles 119 Seattle 103 1–2 Great Western Forum, Los Angeles, California 3 TNT 10:30et
4 May 10 Los Angeles 112 Seattle 100 1–3 Great Western Forum, Los Angeles, California 4 NBC 3:00et
5 May 12 Seattle 95 Los Angeles 110 1–4 KeyArena, Seattle, Washington 5 TNT 10:30et
Los Angeles wins series 4–1

Conference Finals[edit]

(1) Utah Jazz vs. (3) Los Angeles Lakers[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1997 Western Conference Semifinals (Utah won 4–1)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(UTA-LAL)

Venue Box score Television
1 May 16 Utah 112 Los Angeles 77 1–0 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 1 NBC 3:00et
2 May 18 Utah 99 Los Angeles 95 2–0 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 2 TNT 8:30et
3 May 22 Los Angeles 98 Utah 109 3–0 Great Western Forum, Los Angeles, California 3 TNT 10:30et
4 May 24 Los Angeles 92 Utah 96 4–0 Great Western Forum, Los Angeles, California 4 NBC 3:30et
Utah wins series 4–0

Eastern Conference[edit]

Champion: Chicago Bulls

First Round[edit]

(1) Chicago Bulls vs. (8) New Jersey Nets[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: This is the first meeting between the Bulls and Nets.

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(CHI-NJN)

Venue Box score Television
1* April 24 Chicago 96 New Jersey 93 1–0 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 1 TNT 8:00et
2 April 26 Chicago 96 New Jersey 91 2–0 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 2 NBC 5:30et
3 April 29 New Jersey 101 Chicago 116 3–0 Continental Airlines Arena, East Rutherford, New Jersey 3 TNT 7:00et
Chicago wins series 3–0

(4) Charlotte Hornets vs. (5) Atlanta Hawks[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: This is the first meeting between the Hornets and Hawks.

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(CHA-ATL)

Venue Box score Television
1 April 23 Charlotte 97 Atlanta 87 1–0 Charlotte Coliseum, Charlotte, North Carolina 1 TBS 7:00et
2 April 25 Charlotte 92 Atlanta 85 2–0 Charlotte Coliseum, Charlotte, North Carolina 2 TNT 8:00et
3 April 28 Atlanta 96 Charlotte 64 2–1 Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia 3 TNT 8:00et
4 May 1 Atlanta 82 Charlotte 91 3–1 Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia 4 TNT 7:00et
Charlotte wins series 3–1

(2) Miami Heat vs. (7) New York Knicks[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1997 Eastern Conference Semifinals (Miami won 4–3)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(MIA-NYK)

Venue Box score Television
1 April 24 Miami 94 New York 79 1–0 Miami Arena, Miami, Florida 1 TBS 7:00et
2 April 26 Miami 86 New York 96 1–1 Miami Arena, Miami, Florida 2 NBC 12:30et
3 April 28 New York 85 Miami 91 2–1 Madison Square Garden, New York, New York 3 TBS 7:00et
4 April 30 New York 90 Miami 85 2–2 Madison Square Garden, New York, New York 4 TNT 8:00et
5 May 3 Miami 81 New York 98 2–3 Miami Arena, Miami, Florida 5 NBC 12:30et
New York wins series 3–2

Mourning-Johnson fight in Game 4.

(3) Indiana Pacers vs. (6) Cleveland Cavaliers[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: This is the first meeting between the Pacers and Cavaliers.

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(IND-CLE)

Venue Box score Television
1 April 23 Indiana 106 Cleveland 77 1–0 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 1 TNT 8:00et
2 April 25 Indiana 92 Cleveland 86 2–0 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 2 NBC 1:00et
3 April 27 Cleveland 86 Indiana 77 2–1 Gund Arena, Cleveland, Ohio 3 TNT 7:00et
4 April 30 Cleveland 74 Indiana 80 3–1 Gund Arena, Cleveland, Ohio 4 TBS 7:00et
Indiana wins series 3–1

Conference Semifinals[edit]

(1) Chicago Bulls vs. (4) Charlotte Hornets[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1995 Eastern Conference First Round (Chicago won 3–1)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(CHI-CHA)

Venue Box score Television
1 May 3 Chicago 83 Charlotte 70 1–0 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 1 NBC 5:30et
2 May 6 Chicago 76 Charlotte 78 1–1 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 2 TNT 8:00et
3 May 8 Charlotte 89 Chicago 103 2–1 Charlotte Coliseum, Charlotte, North Carolina 3 TNT 8:00et
4 May 10 Charlotte 80 Chicago 94 3–1 Charlotte Coliseum, Charlotte, North Carolina 4 NBC 5:30et
5 May 13 Chicago 93 Charlotte 84 4–1 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 5 TNT 9:30et
Chicago wins series 4–1

(3) Indiana Pacers vs. (7) New York Knicks[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: 1995 Eastern Conference Semifinals (Indiana won 4–3)

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(IND-NYK)

Venue Box score Television
1 May 5 Indiana 93 New York 83 1–0 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 1 TNT 8:00et
2 May 7 Indiana 85 New York 77 2–0 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 2 TNT 8:00et
3 May 9 New York 83 Indiana 76 2–1 Madison Square Garden, New York, New York 3 NBC 1:00et
4 May 10 New York 107 Indiana 118 3–1 Madison Square Garden, New York, New York 4 NBC 12:30et
5 May 13 Indiana 99 New York 88 4–1 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 5 TNT 7:00et
Indiana wins series 4–1

Conference Finals[edit]

(1) Chicago Bulls vs. (3) Indiana Pacers[edit]

Last Playoff Meeting: This is the first meeting between the Bulls and Pacers.

Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Record

(CHI-IND)

Venue Box score Television
1 May 17 Chicago 85 Indiana 79 1–0 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 1 NBC 3:30et
2 May 19 Chicago 104 Indiana 98 2–0 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 2 TNT 8:30et
3 May 23 Indiana 107 Chicago 105 2–1 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 3 NBC 3:30et
4 May 25 Indiana 96 Chicago 94 2–2 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 4 NBC 3:30et
5 May 27 Chicago 106 Indiana 87 3–2 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 5 NBC 9:00et
6 May 29 Indiana 92 Chicago 89 3–3 Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana 6 NBC 9:00et
7 May 31 Chicago 88 Indiana 83 4–3 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 7 NBC 7:00et
Chicago wins series 4–3

In Game 4, Reggie Miller hits the game-winning 3 with 0.7 left.

NBA Finals[edit]

Chicago Bulls vs. Utah Jazz[edit]

Main article: 1998 NBA Finals
Game Date Home Score Visitor Score Venue Box score Television
1* June 3 Utah 88 Chicago 85 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 1 NBC 9:00et
2 June 5 Utah 88 Chicago 93 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 2 NBC 9:00et
3 June 7 Chicago 96 Utah 54 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 3 NBC 8:30et
4 June 10 Chicago 86 Utah 82 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 4 NBC 8:30et
5 June 12 Chicago 81 Utah 83 United Center, Chicago, Illinois 5 NBC 8:30et
6 June 14 Utah 86 Chicago 87 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah 6 NBC 9:00et
Chicago wins NBA Championship series 4–2

In Game 3, Utah scores the fewest points in any playoff game in NBA history (54). The winning margin (42) is also a Finals record. In Game 6, Michael Jordan hits the series-winning shot with 5.2 seconds left. Game 6 is Michael Jordan's final NBA game with the Bulls.

External links[edit]