|Dates:||June 4 – 14|
(Los Angeles Lakers)
|Announcers:||Mike Breen, Mark Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy|
|Radio network:||ESPN Radio|
|Announcers:||Mike Tirico, Hubie Brown and Jack Ramsay|
|Game 1: Ken Mauer, Dan Crawford, Joe DeRosa|
|Game 2: Steve Javie, Monty McCutchen, Tom Washington|
|Game 3: Joe Crawford, Derrick Stafford, Mark Wunderlich|
|Game 4: Bennett Salvatore, Mike Callahan, Scott Foster|
|Game 5: Dan Crawford, Joe DeRosa, Ken Mauer|
|Hall of Famers:||Coaches:
Phil Jackson (2007)
|Eastern Finals:||Magic defeated Cavaliers, 4–2|
|Western Finals:||Lakers defeated Nuggets, 4–2|
The 2009 NBA Finals was the championship series of the 2008–09 NBA season, and the conclusion of the season's playoffs. The Los Angeles Lakers, top-seeded champions of the Western Conference, defeated the Orlando Magic, third-seeded champions of the Eastern Conference, four games to one in a best-of-seven series. This is both the Los Angeles Lakers' fourth NBA championship in the 2000s and the Magic's only Finals appearance without Shaquille O'Neal.
North American broadcast coverage of the Finals was produced by ESPN and televised by ABC in the United States, TSN in Canada and Five in the United Kingdom
The Los Angeles Lakers returned to the Finals for the 30th time in franchise history, an NBA record, and for the second consecutive year, marking the first time that the previous year's runner-up won the NBA Finals since the Detroit Pistons in 1988 and 1989. It was also the sixth appearance in the Finals in the 2000s decade for the Lakers (2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2008), the most of any NBA team in the era. The championship was the fourth of the decade for the Lakers, most among all teams in the four major professional sports leagues in North America. It was the Lakers' 15th NBA title, second only to the 17 NBA championships held by the Boston Celtics. Head coach Phil Jackson captured his 10th NBA championship as a coach, surpassing Red Auerbach for most championships all-time by an NBA coach. Jackson also passed Auerbach and NHL coach Scotty Bowman for most championships all-time by a head coach in a major American sports league.
The Orlando Magic were in the Finals for the first time since their Finals debut in 1995, when they were swept by the Houston Rockets.
The Los Angeles Lakers held home-court advantage due to their better season record. Games 1 and 2 were held at Staples Center in Los Angeles on June 4 and 7, respectively. Games 3, 4, and 5, were held at Amway Arena in Orlando on June 9, 11, and 14 respectively. If the final two games had been necessary, they would have been played at Staples Center on June 16 (game 6) and 18 (7).
Although the Magic won both regular-season matchups with the Lakers, Los Angeles was able to take 4 out of 5 games in this series. Both regular-season games and three of the NBA Finals games were close contests, decided by six points or fewer or in overtime. The Lakers won Game 2 on June 7 101-96 in overtime. Then they won Game 4 on June 11 in overtime as well.
Tyronn Lue, a backup point guard with Orlando, appeared with the Lakers during their initial championship run in the early 2000s and faced his former team in the finals. Lue and another backup point guard, Anthony Johnson were the only players on Orlando's roster with NBA finals experience. However, neither saw playing time during the series, as Lue was inactive with an injury and Johnson lost his minutes to teammate Jameer Nelson, who returned from a shoulder injury in time for the Finals. Trevor Ariza, the Lakers starting small forward, faced the team who traded him to the Lakers in 2007.
Rodd Houston narrated the Lakers' 2009 season through the Lakers 2009 championship home video on NBA Entertainment. As with previous championship videos, two versions exist: the DVD version recaps the entire 2009 Lakers' season, from the regular season and playoffs to the finals; the TV version recaps only the Lakers' playoff run.
The two team captains (the Lakers' Kobe Bryant and the Magic's Dwight Howard) were teammates and starters on the United States men's national team the previous summer, winning a gold medal at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Each player defeated another fellow Olympic starter in his respective conference final series: Bryant defeated Carmelo Anthony's Denver Nuggets and Howard advanced past LeBron James' Cleveland Cavaliers.
2009 NBA Playoffs
Main article: 2009 NBA Playoffs
|Los Angeles Lakers (Western Conference Champion)||Orlando Magic (Eastern Conference Champion)|
1st Pacific, 1st West, 2nd Overall
|Regular season||59–23 (.720)
1st Southeast, 3rd East, 4th Overall
|Defeated the (8) Utah Jazz, 4–1||First Round||Defeated the (6) Philadelphia 76ers, 4–2|
|Defeated the (5) Houston Rockets, 4–3||Conference Semifinals||Defeated the (2) Boston Celtics, 4–3|
|Defeated the (2) Denver Nuggets, 4–2||Conference Finals||Defeated the (1) Cleveland Cavaliers, 4–2|
The Orlando Magic won both games in the regular-season series:
|December 20, 2008||Recap||Los Angeles Lakers 103, Orlando Magic 106||Amway Arena, Orlando, Florida|
|January 16, 2009||Recap||Orlando Magic 109, Los Angeles Lakers 103||Staples Center, Los Angeles, California|
Los Angeles Lakers
Main article: 2008–09 Los Angeles Lakers seasonThe Lakers were the favorite to emerge from the Western Conference, but their road to the Finals was a tough one. They played three physical series versus the Utah Jazz, Houston Rockets, and Denver Nuggets, winning in 5, 7, and 6 games, respectively. Going into the Finals, the Lakers finished off the Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals with two good performances in games 5 and 6, making analysts pick them as the favorites in the Finals.
The Magic were overlooked by many to even reach the Eastern Conference Finals, as they played in the shadows of the #1-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers, led by regular-season MVP LeBron James, and defending champion #2-seed Boston Celtics. However, after dispatching the Philadelphia 76ers in six games, the Magic stunned the Celtics by winning Game 7 in Boston. The Celtics were previously 32–0 when leading a series 3–2, and 17–3 previously in Game 7s at home. Orlando assistant coach Patrick Ewing had publicly "guaranteed" that Orlando would win game 7
In the next round, Orlando was given little chance by many to defeat the top-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers, but a combination of three-point shooting and the inside presence of Dwight Howard created a matchup nightmare for Cleveland on defense, and Orlando ultimately won in six games. In Game 6, Howard had 40 points and 14 rebounds.
- All times are in Eastern Daylight Time (UTC−4).
|Recap||Orlando Magic 75, Los Angeles Lakers 100||Staples Center, Los Angeles, California
Attendance: 18,997 Referees:
|Scoring by quarter: 24–22, 19–31, 15–29, 17–18|
|Pts: Mickaël Piétrus 14Rebs: Dwight Howard 15
Asts: Jameer Nelson 4
|Pts: Kobe Bryant 40Rebs: Lamar Odom 14
Asts: Kobe Bryant 8
|L.A. Lakers lead series, 1–0|
After an evenly battled first quarter, the Magic took the lead thanks to field goals and assists from point guard Jameer Nelson, who was playing his first game since injuring his shoulder during the regular season in February. Down 33–28 with 8:38 left in the 2nd quarter, the Lakers went on a 10–0 run and never looked back. The Lakers ended the 3rd quarter on a 25–10 run, led by fierce play by Kobe Bryant, who finished with 40 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists, joining the likes of Shaquille O'Neal, Michael Jordan, and Jerry West to put up those numbers in a single NBA Finals game. The 25-point margin of victory was the 6th-largest in NBA Finals Game 1 history.
Due to stellar defense by the Lakers, Dwight Howard was a dismal 1–6 from the field, his fewest made field goals in his playoff career, and finished with 12 points, 10 of which came from free throws. The Magic shot only 29.9% (23–77) from the field, the second lowest percentage in the NBA Finals.
|Recap||Orlando Magic 96, Los Angeles Lakers 101||OT||Staples Center, Los Angeles, California
Attendance: 18,997 Referees:
|Scoring by quarter: 15–15, 20–25, 30–23, 23–25 OT: 8–13|
|Pts: Rashard Lewis 34Rebs: Dwight Howard 16
Asts: Rashard Lewis 7
|Pts: Kobe Bryant 29Rebs: Pau Gasol 10
Asts: Kobe Bryant 8
|L.A. Lakers lead series, 2–0|
Both teams got off to a slow start and were tied at 15 after the first quarter, setting a record-low for combined score (30) in the first quarter of an NBA Finals game. The Lakers picked up the pace in the 2nd quarter, but Rashard Lewis kept the Magic in the game, scoring 18 of the team's 20 points in the quarter, including the final 16, on his way to a playoff career-high and Finals franchise-high 34 points for the game. The Magic outscored the Lakers in the 3rd quarter to take a 2-point lead in the 4th.
With the game tied at 84, Rashard Lewis hit a jumper with 1:32 remaining to give the Magic a 2-point lead. Kobe Bryant responded with a jumper of his own to tie the game. With 47 seconds left, Hedo Türkoğlu hit a jumper that was originally called a 3-pointer. However, replay showed that his foot was on the line, giving the Magic a 2-point lead. With 33 seconds remaining, Dwight Howard was able to deflect, but not steal, a Derek Fisher pass, and Pau Gasol was able to again tie the game at 88 with a layup.
On the ensuing Magic possession, the Lakers played great defense and forced Courtney Lee to miss an awkward layup shot with 10.5 seconds left. With a chance to take a 2–0 series lead, Kobe Bryant was blocked on a jumper by Türkoğlu, who gained control of the ball and called time-out with 0.6 seconds left. After another timeout, Türkoğlu threw a half-court lob to Courtney Lee, who had come free after a screen on his defender. However, Lee was traveling too fast and launched his layup from almost behind the backboard, causing it to miss.
With the Lakers up 1 in overtime with 1:55 left, Derek Fisher stole a J. J. Redick pass and was fouled on the ensuing fastbreak, making both free throws. After the Magic were unable to convert, Kobe Bryant made a pivotal assist to Pau Gasol for a layup-and-one, giving the Lakers a 6-point lead and the eventual victory.
|Recap||Los Angeles Lakers 104, Orlando Magic 108||Amway Arena, Orlando, Florida
Attendance: 17,461 Referees:
|Scoring by quarter: 31–27, 23–32, 21–22, 29–27|
|Pts: Kobe Bryant 31Rebs: Trevor Ariza 7
Asts: Kobe Bryant 8
|Pts: Howard, Lewis 21 eachRebs: Dwight Howard 14
Asts: Hedo Türkoğlu 7
|L.A. Lakers lead series, 2–1|
The Magic came out in Game 3 with fire. The Magic shot a field goal percentage of 65% for the game, an NBA Finals record. This also included a 75% first quarter, also an NBA Finals record. However, despite the incredible shooting percentage, the Lakers managed to stay close for much of the game. The game was only sealed for the Magic on a Mikael Pietrus steal in the waning minute of the 4th quarter.
This win marked the first Finals win in Magic franchise history, losing their first 6 Finals games (being swept in their first appearance and losing Games 1 and 2)
|Recap||Los Angeles Lakers 99, Orlando Magic 91||OT||Amway Arena, Orlando, Florida
Attendance: 17,461 Referees:
|Scoring by quarter: 20–24, 17–25, 30–14, 20–24 OT: 12–4|
|Pts: Kobe Bryant 32Rebs: Pau Gasol 10
Asts: Kobe Bryant 8
|Pts: Hedo Türkoğlu 25Rebs: Dwight Howard 21
Asts: Rashard Lewis 4
|L.A. Lakers lead series, 3–1|
Coming off their franchise's first NBA Finals game victory, the Magic quickly took the lead in the first quarter. However, Kobe Bryant kept the Lakers in the game, scoring 13 of the team's 20 first-quarter points. Dwight Howard played a great first quarter, with 11 rebounds and 4 blocks in the opening frame. In addition, he drew many fouls, putting Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol, and Lamar Odom in foul trouble and forcing Lakers coach Phil Jackson to use Josh Powell and D. J. Mbenga early in the game. The Magic were able to increase the lead to 12 at halftime.
The Lakers came out of the locker room aggressive and outscored the Magic 30–14 in the 3rd quarter, led by Trevor Ariza, who scored 13 points in the quarter, including two 3-pointers. Down by 6 in the opening minutes of the 4th quarter, the Magic were able to come back to take a 76–75 lead halfway through the quarter, but unable to increase the lead due to poor free-throw shooting, specifically from Hedo Türkoğlu and Dwight Howard.
With 3 minutes left in the 4th quarter and the game tied at 79, Howard converted a 3-point play to give the Magic an 82–79 lead. On the next Laker possession, the Magic played good defense, but Trevor Ariza was able to hit a 3-pointer as the shot clock expired to tie the game at 82. After Hedo Türkoğlu hit a stepback 3-point shot, Howard blocked Gasol's jumper, giving him a single-game NBA Finals record with 9 blocked shots. On the bench to witness it was the previous record holder, his assistant coach Patrick Ewing, who had 8 in Game 5 of the 1994 NBA Finals while with the New York Knicks. Türkoğlu made another jumper with 1:34 remaining to give the Magic a 5-point lead.
Down 87–82 with 31 seconds left, Kobe Bryant spun through the lane and passed to Gasol for a dunk to cut the lead to 3. On the next Magic possession, Howard was fouled by Bryant with 11 seconds remaining. Needing just one free-throw to make the game a 2-possession affair, Howard missed both shots.
Out of the timeout, the Lakers elected to take the ball out at three-quarters court instead of half-court in order to space out the floor. The Magic double-teamed Bryant in the backcourt, allowing him to pass the ball up to Ariza, who in turned passed it to Derek Fisher on the right wing. Having missed his first five 3-point shots of the game, Fisher spotted up and hit a pivotal three-pointer to tie the game at 87 with 4.6 seconds left. On the final possession of regulation, Mickaël Piétrus missed a 20-footer.
The overtime session began with a 3-pointer by Rashard Lewis and two contested jumpers by Kobe Bryant to give the Lakers a 91–90 lead. With 1:27 left in OT, Howard split a pair of free throws to tie the game at 91. On the next possession, the Lakers would miss a layup and a jumper, but regained possession on an offensive rebound by Ariza and a loose-ball foul on Jameer Nelson. With 31 seconds left, Kobe Bryant passed out of a double-team. Fisher then hit a 3-pointer to give the Lakers a 94–91 lead.
Out of a timeout, Türkoğlu rushed a 3-point shot and missed. Rashard Lewis backtapped the rebound to center-court, but the ball went to Pau Gasol, who ran in unimpeded for a dunk, giving the Lakers the lead for good. In the next possession, the Magic missed another shot, bouncing the ball to Fisher, who passed it to Ariza, then to Gasol for a dunk, but Pietrus slammed both arms on his back, resulting in Gasol getting a technical foul and Pietrus a flagrant 1 foul.
After coming so close, the Magic lost a chance to tie the series, a fact not lost upon the arena staff in Orlando. Upon the game's finish, Oasis's "Don't Look Back in Anger" was played throughout Amway Arena.
|Recap||Los Angeles Lakers 99, Orlando Magic 86||Amway Arena, Orlando, Florida
Attendance: 17,461 Referees:
|Scoring by quarter: 26–28, 30–18, 20–15, 23–25|
|Pts: Kobe Bryant 30Rebs: Pau Gasol 15
Asts: Kobe Bryant 5
|Pts: Rashard Lewis 18Rebs: Howard, Lewis 10 each
Asts: Lewis, Nelson 4 each
|L.A. Lakers win series 4–1|
The Magic, facing the prospect of the Lakers winning a championship on their home floor, came out with a good start, leading by as much as 9 in the first quarter. In the opening frame, all 5 starters scored and assisted on at least one field goal, but the Lakers pulled to within 2 at the quarter break. Down 40–36 with 7:11 in the 2nd quarter, the Lakers went on a 16–0 run, fueled by two 3-pointers and solid defensive play from Trevor Ariza. The Lakers led by as much as 12 in the 2nd quarter and the score was 56–46 at halftime.
Coming out of the half, Orlando cut the lead to 5 with 7:45 remaining in the 3rd on a 3-pointer by Rafer Alston. Lamar Odom answered with back-to-back 3-pointers to restore the Laker lead to double digits. Leading by as much as 18 in the half, Los Angeles led by 15 going into the 4th quarter. In the final quarter, Orlando attempted a run but managed to cut the lead down to only 12; at the buzzer, the Lakers celebrated their 15th title.
Following the game, NBA Commissioner David Stern presented the Lakers with the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy and presented Kobe Bryant with the Bill Russell NBA Finals MVP Trophy during a presentation on center-court at Amway Arena. Bryant averaged 32.4 points, 5.6 rebounds and 7.4 assists per game during the series.
- 2009 NBA Champion: Los Angeles Lakers
- Finals MVP: Kobe Bryant
The series was the third straight championship that the Lakers clinched on the road (after 2001 and 2002); the last time the Lakers clinched the championship at home was in 2000. With their team's win, Pau Gasol became the first Spaniard, and D. J. Mbenga the first Belgian Congolese player, to win an NBA championship. Bill and Luke Walton became the third father and son pair to each win a championship as a player; the other father–son combinations are Matt Guokas, Sr. (1947) with Matt Jr. (1967) and Rick Barry (1975) with son Brent (2005 and 2007).
For the Magic, Game 3 marked their first Finals game victory; the franchise lost their first six Finals games after being swept in their first Finals appearance in 1995. In Game 3, the Magic also set the Finals record for the best field goal percentage with 63 percent, and the Finals record for the best field goal percentage in the first half with 75 percent.
This was the first NBA Finals series since 1984 to have two games go into overtime (Games 2 and 4); both were won by the Lakers. Dwight Howard set an NBA Finals single-game record with 9 blocked shots in Game 4. Although the game went into overtime, all blocks were during regulation. The previous record holders were his assistant coach, Patrick Ewing, who had 8 in Game 5 of the 1994 NBA Finals while with the New York Knicks, and Bill Walton who accomplished the same feat in Game 6 of the 1977 NBA Finals while playing for the Portland Trail Blazers.
This is the seventh time in NBA Finals history that a team that lost the championship the previous season has won the Finals the very next year. It is the second time in Lakers history, after the 1984 and 1985 teams. Having achieved three Game 1 victories throughout the postseason (first round vs. Utah, conference finals vs. Denver, and NBA Finals vs. Orlando), Phil Jackson-coached teams are now 44-0 in series where they win Game 1.
This is also the first odd season since 2001 that the San Antonio Spurs did not win the NBA Finals; they won in 2003, 2005 and 2007.
This was the last Finals in which a trophy silhouette was painted in mid-court. The tradition began in 2005 and ended for the 2010 series. This was also the last NBA Finals to be played at Amway Arena; the Magic moved to the Amway Center for the 2010-11 season.
|Los Angeles Lakers||Orlando Magic|
|Points||Kobe Bryant||40||Kobe Bryant||32.4||Hedo Türkoğlu||18.0|
|Rebounds||Dwight Howard||21 (OT)
|Pau Gasol||9.2||Dwight Howard||15.2|
|Assists||Kobe Bryant||8||Kobe Bryant||7.4||Rashard Lewis||4.0|
|Trevor Ariza||1.8||Dwight Howard||1.6|
4 4 4
|Pau Gasol||1.8||Dwight Howard||4.0|
|2009 Los Angeles Lakers Finals roster|
Roster • Transactions Last transaction: 2009-02-18
|2009 Orlando Magic Finals roster|
Roster • Transactions Last transaction: 2009-03-23
Aside from ABC (U.S.) and TSN (Canada), other broadcasters across the world covered the Finals: