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Hakeem Olajuwon

NBA Finals Storyboards: Hakeem Olajuwon

 

See below for the “NBA Finals Storyboards” of Hakeem Olajuwon. Each and every Finals series he played has been measured, analyzed and charted below. Olajuwon burst onto the scene with an inspiring Finals performance against peak-Larry Bird and the Celtics. Then, he took full advantage of Michael Jordan’s retirement by winning back-to-back titles in 1994 and 1995. His performances in those series and playoffs are legendary and absolutely iconic.

These “storyboards” were incredibly FUN for me to assemble, as I learned so much about the players and the teams involved in basketball’s biggest stage. I hope you enjoy reading them! For any questions or comments, tweet me @NBAStatsLab for some fun banter.¬†View from top-to-bottom to see each of his Finals performances in chronological order.

NOTE: I’ve graded each Finals series by calculating the player’s “RINGscore” value. Factoring into this calculation include a player’s box score performance, win/loss result, # of games played, the difficulty of competition, # of times player led a game in stats, the player’s statistical rank over his peers, high-game outputs, and more!

 

On to the stats and stories of “The Dream”…

 

1) Hakeem Olajuwon – 1986 NBA Finals – HOU vs BOS

Click to enlarge Hakeem’s 1986 NBA Finals Storyboard. There’s no shame in losing to the legendary 67-win 1986-87 Boston Celtics. Despite the stiff competition, Olajuwon led the series in blocks and rebounds and was game leader 13 times in the five major stat categories.

 

2) Hakeem Olajuwon – 1994 NBA Finals – HOU vs NYK

Click to enlarge Hakeem’s 1994 NBA Finals Storyboard. Winning his first ring officially stamped “The Dream” as an all-time legend. He led the Rockets on a dominant run to the Finals & stymied Patrick Ewing in an epic Finals duel.

 

3) Hakeem Olajuwon – 1995 NBA Finals – HOU vs ORL

Click to enlarge Hakeem’s 1995 NBA Finals Storyboard. This playoff run will forever stand as one of the greatest ever. The 47-win Rockets stunned the West’s top-seeded Spurs, with Olajuwon famously dominating then-MVP David Robinson. In the Finals, playing against a superior regular season team, Hakeem outplayed young Shaquille O’Neal and rolled to a 4-game sweep to secure back-to-back titles. Hakeem’s Finals performance is one of the greatest you’ll ever see.

 

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