1998–99 NBA season
League National Basketball Association
Sport Basketball
TV partner/s NBC, TBS, TNT
Top draft pick Michael Olowokandi
Picked by Los Angeles Clippers
Regular season
Season MVP Karl Malone (Utah)
Top scorer Allen Iverson (Philadelphia)
Eastern champions New York Knicks
Eastern runners-up Indiana Pacers
Western champions San Antonio Spurs
Western runners-up Portland Trail Blazers
Finals champions San Antonio Spurs
Runners-up New York Knicks
Finals MVP Tim Duncan (San Antonio)

The 1998–99 NBA season was the 53rd season of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Due to a lockout, the season did not start until February 5, 1999 after a new six year Collective Bargaining Agreement was reached between the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association. All 29 teams played a shortened 50-game regular season schedule, 61% of the regular 82 games, and the 16 teams who qualified for the playoffs played a full post-season schedule. The season ended with the San Antonio Spurs winning the franchise's first NBA championship, beating the New York Knicks 4 games to 1 in the 1999 NBA Finals.

Notable occurrences

  • The lockout occurred during the 1998-1999 NBA Season, which was the first season following the departure of Michael Jordan before he returned to play for the Washington Wizards.
  • The NBA and the Players Association reached an agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement on January 18, 1999.
  • The All-Star Game was not held due to the league's lockout.
  • Due to the lockout, the pre-season was shortened to just two games instead of the normal eight, and some teams did not meet each other at all during the course of the 50-game regular season. To preserve games between teams in the same conference, much of the time missed was made up for by skipping well over half of the games played between teams in the opposite conference.
  • The New York Knicks became only the second #8 seed to advance in the playoffs by defeating a #1 seed. They are the only #8 seed to advance to the NBA Finals.
  • The Los Angeles Lakers played their final season at the Great Western Forum.
  • The Los Angeles Clippers played their final season at the Los Angeles Sports Arena.
  • The Indiana Pacers played their final season at the Market Square Arena.
  • The Denver Nuggets played their final season at the McNichols Sports Arena.
  • The Miami Heat played their final season at the Miami Arena.
  • The Toronto Raptors played their first game in Air Canada Centre.
  • The Spurs became the first former ABA team to win a championship. (As of October 2009, they are still the only ABA franchise with a title; the Nets and Pacers have not won a title, and the Nuggets have never played an NBA Finals game.)
  • The Atlanta Hawks played in the Georgia Dome while Philips Arena was constructed for the 1999–2000 season. This season would be the Hawks' last playoff appearance until the 2007–08 season.
  • The Clippers tied the 1988-89 Miami Heat for the longest losing streak to start the season (17) from February 5 till March 11 when they defeated the Sacramento Kings. In December 2009, this record was broken by the New Jersey Nets who lost the first eighteen games of the season.
  • Hall of Fame coach Red Holzman passed away on November 13, 1998 at age 78.

Final standings

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division
Miami Heat 33 17 .660 -
Orlando Magic 33 17 .660 -
Philadelphia 76ers 28 22 .560 5
New York Knicks 27 23 .540 6
Boston Celtics 19 31 .380 14
Washington Wizards 18 32 .360 15
New Jersey Nets 16 34 .320 17
Central Division
Indiana Pacers 33 17 .660 -
Atlanta Hawks 31 19 .620 2
Detroit Pistons 29 21 .580 4
Milwaukee Bucks 28 22 .560 5
Charlotte Hornets 26 24 .520 7
Toronto Raptors 23 27 .460 10
Cleveland Cavaliers 22 28 .440 11
Chicago Bulls 13 37 .260 20

Western Conference

Midwest Division
San Antonio Spurs C 37 13 .740 -
Utah Jazz 37 13 .740 -
Houston Rockets 31 19 .620 6
Minnesota Timberwolves 25 25 .500 12
Dallas Mavericks 19 31 .380 18
Denver Nuggets 14 36 .280 23
Vancouver Grizzlies 8 42 .160 29
Pacific Division
Portland Trail Blazers 35 15 .700 -
Los Angeles Lakers 31 19 .620 4
Sacramento Kings 27 23 .540 8
Phoenix Suns 27 23 .540 8
Seattle SuperSonics 25 25 .500 10
Golden State Warriors 21 29 .420 14
Los Angeles Clippers 9 41 .180 26

C - NBA Champions

Statistics leaders

Category Player Team Stat
Points per game Allen Iverson Philadelphia 76ers 26.8
Rebounds per game Chris Webber Sacramento Kings 13.0
Assists per game Jason Kidd Phoenix Suns 10.8
Steals per game Kendall Gill New Jersey Nets 2.7
Blocks per game Alonzo Mourning Miami Heat 3.9
FG% Shaquille O'Neal Los Angeles Lakers 57.6
FT% Reggie Miller Indiana Pacers 91.5
3FG% Dell Curry Milwaukee Bucks 47.6

NBA awards

  • Most Valuable Player: Karl Malone, Utah Jazz
  • Rookie of the Year: Vince Carter, Toronto Raptors
  • Defensive Player of the Year: Alonzo Mourning, Miami Heat
  • Sixth Man of the Year: Darrell Armstrong, Orlando Magic
  • Most Improved Player: Darrell Armstrong, Orlando Magic
  • Coach of the Year: Mike Dunleavy, Portland Trail Blazers
  • All-NBA First Team:
    • F - Tim Duncan, San Antonio Spurs
    • F - Karl Malone, Utah Jazz
    • C - Alonzo Mourning, Miami Heat
    • G - Allen Iverson, Philadelphia 76ers
    • G - Jason Kidd, Phoenix Suns
  • All-NBA Second Team:
    • F - Chris Webber, Sacramento Kings
    • F - Grant Hill, Detroit Pistons
    • C - Shaquille O'Neal, Los Angeles Lakers
    • G - Gary Payton, Seattle SuperSonics
    • G - Tim Hardaway, Miami Heat
  • All-NBA Third Team:
    • F - Kevin Garnett, Minnesota Timberwolves
    • F - Antonio McDyess, Denver Nuggets
    • C - Hakeem Olajuwon, Houston Rockets
    • G - Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
    • G - John Stockton, Utah Jazz
  • NBA All-Defensive First Team:
    • F - Tim Duncan, San Antonio Spurs
    • F - Karl Malone, Utah Jazz
    • F - Scottie Pippen, Houston Rockets
    • C - Alonzo Mourning, Miami Heat
    • G - Gary Payton, Seattle SuperSonics
    • G - Jason Kidd, Phoenix Suns
  • NBA All-Defensive Second Team:
    • F - P.J. Brown, Miami Heat
    • F - Theo Ratliff, Philadelphia 76ers
    • C - Dikembe Mutombo, Atlanta Hawks
    • G - Eddie Jones, Los Angeles Lakers/Charlotte Hornets
    • G - Mookie Blaylock, Atlanta Hawks
  • All-NBA Rookie First Team:
    • Vince Carter, Toronto Raptors
    • Paul Pierce, Boston Celtics
    • Jason Williams, Sacramento Kings
    • Mike Bibby, Vancouver Grizzlies
    • Matt Harpring, Orlando Magic
  • All-NBA Rookie Second Team:
    • Antawn Jamison, Golden State Warriors
    • Michael Doleac, Orlando Magic
    • Michael Olowokandi, Los Angeles Clippers
    • Michael Dickerson, Houston Rockets
    • Cuttino Mobley, Houston Rockets

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