1986 WCR1 Game 1: Houston's young Twin Towers Akeem Olajuwon (28/16) and Ralph Sampson bully Showtime; Magic Johnson (26/7/18) capped off the comeback with one of the most famous assists of his career, a stand-still laser to Kurt Rambis so nice it had even Celtics legend Tommy Heinsohn screaming at the top of his lungs. Heinsohn was providing color alongside legendary play-by-play man Dick Stockton. Stockton's intro for CBS began with a mention of the last time Houston and LA had met in the 1st Round. It was 1981 and LA was looking to repeat as champs after Magic Johnson won Finals MVP as a rookie the year before. It never happened thanks to then-Rockets center Moses Malone. LA was stunned in a 3-game sweep. The Rockets would advance to the 1981 Finals but lose to 2nd-year player Larry Bird and the Celtics. The Lakers wouldn't miss the Finals again until this 1986 season, when they were, like in 1981, looking to repeat as champs but again, like in 1981, found themselves upset in the 1st round by a Rockets team led by a dominant center. However, Akeem Olajuwon, the 1st overall pick in the '84 Draft two years prior, wasn't exactly playing center yet. That owed to the presence of 7'4" teammate Ralph Sampson, another young phenom towering in Houston's frontcourt. It was a unique team. Houston knocked off the champs in dramatic fashion via buzzer beater by Sampson in Game 5 (the equivalent of a Game back then as the 1st round was a best-of-3). In yet another coincidence, Houston would end up making the Finals, where, like in 1981, they would lose to Larry Bird and the Celtics. That '86 Celtics team is widely regarded as one of the best teams ever. The Lakers with Magic and Kareem only failed to make the Finals twice in the 1980's.
Lakers 119-107 Rockets
Magic: 26pts (9-15) 7reb 18ast 3stl
Kareem: 31pts (13-33) 6reb 3ast 1stl
Olajuwon: 28pts (10-14) 16reb 3ast 2stl 4blk
: "Party All the Time" by Eddie Murphy is from 1986.
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