I hope this will wind up being a popular topic on these boards with immense traffic. We utilize a lot of YouTube here (including, but not limited, that of the NBL), so why not do this for the NBA as a subject? Why wasn't it done so before?

I'll start things off with this: the classic 1984 NBA Finals between the champs Boston Celtics and the wicked Now Deservedly Crumbling Evil Laker Empire. This was not only the first NBA Finals I ever watched end to end as a little kid, but IMHO it is my favorite of them all--and there were several over the years I liked. It had everything in this epic: passion, hatred, intensity, pride, guts, character, memorable moments. The year itself 1984 is very special to me in terms of pop culture. I was perhaps the only person in my neighborhood who despised the Lakers. Don't know if this series ever made it to Australia and New Zealand back then--I actually doubt it. Enjoy!

There are two games I very much like to share from that series--the NBA didn't officially call it the NBA Finals two years later. It was still called the NBA World Championship until then perhaps out of respect it wasn't between an NBA team and a top foreign club (almost always European).

To start things off here is Game 5 in its entirety. I remember this game very well. The most memorable thing about this obviously was that how incredibly hot the legendary "Gahden" was then. There was no air conditioning in there, remember--"a steambath of heat and humidity" (100 degrees F on the court), to quote Encyclopaedia Britannica's 1985 yearbook. I remember watching this on CBS on that June Friday evening at 8pm US CST after switching from an NBC re-run special on people's home video, commercials, and bloopers co-hosted by Michael J. Fox (this was at the height of the video boom) and Angie Dickinson called the Homemade Video Special. The Celtics were out on the parquet floor warming up not wearing their warmup pants. The Now Deservedly Crumbling Evil Laker Empire had to suck up oxygen tanks along the bench despite not being in high altitude like in Denver and getting more tired quickly nearly wilting. The Celtics acted like the heat was their best friend and ran up and down the court with ease. Kareem later said the game was like for them "being in a sauna with your clothes on, doing 100 pushups, and running up and down the court". Larry Bird was just brilliant in this game with 34 points and 17 rebounds. Former All-Star Scott Wedman was hurt and depressed. Brent Musberger, Dick Stockton, Celtics legend Tommy Heinson, Kevin Loughery, and Pat O'Brien provide the call for CBS Sports. There's also a profile at halftime about Magic and a brief profile on Johnny Most with this and some sports news, something you don't get much on over the air TV these days in the era of SportsCenter (like Peter Ueberroth failing to convince the Cubans to reconsider their plans to boycott the LA Olympics with the Soviets, that major Denver-Portland Kiki Vandeweghe trade, plus a Commodore 64 computer commercial).

You know, whenever I see the Now Deservedly Crumbling Evil Laker Empire get what it richly deserves over the years, in the form of NOT getting an NBA title, it always brings forth a giant smile to my face! The only thing that will ever top that is seeing the Phoenix Suns win a title outright. Surely this was clearly no more as evident as it was in Game 7 on the following Tuesday night. Honestly, I haven't enjoyed this much fun since--1983 was good for the Dr. J, as was in 1989 with Detroit and 1991 with Chicago with MJ's first title (but the latter was more of a symbolic passing of the torch), and 1992--but it wasn't until exactly 20 years later that I was so truly estatic over the NDCELE's deserved defeat. "Beat LA!" indeed! Coming up is that Game 7. Yeah, they came back home and tied at the former House of Evil but the Celtics showed who's boss. Sadly, aside from next year's Game 1 that is the Memorial Day Massacre, it was the continuation of the sick oppression. The Boston Garden was still hot but not as it was on that Friday. 1984 was a golden age in pro basketball as well as a pivot year for the NBA in so many ways: David Stern succeeded Larry O'Brien in February that year; the Clippers moved up the coast to LA from San Diego (SD never got a team since); that memorable 1984 NBA Draft; the All-Star Weekend made its debut in Denver; the NBA and the NBA Players Association agreed to a salary cap; eight teams in each conference qualified for the playoffs for the first time; and WTBS (generally Turner Sports) started broadcasting NBA games not featuring the Hawks. I'm surprised that this series has yet to make its way onto DVD. If you already have the NBA Dynasty Series: Boston Celtics DVD set, Game 7 (along with Game 4) are in the set, so it may seem a little redundant to you with the complete CBS Sports coverage. But you won't get in there the commercials like in here (more on that later)...

Some of the commercials you get to see. Haven't them in years:
Andy Griffith pitching for AT&T

Three Miller Lite commercials--one just featuring football greats Bubba Smith and Dick Butkus in a bar after playing polo ("I sure hope the horses can swim..."), a memorable one with Bob Uecker ("I must be up in the front row!"), and a hilarious campout one with Smith, Butkus, LC Greenwood, John Madden, Uecker, YA Tittle, Mickey Spillane (RIP), Morgana the Kissing Bandit, Rodney Dangerfield (RIP), Tommy Heinson, Billy Martin (RIP), and Red Auerbach (RIP) among others with that one of those "Taste great! Less filling!" arguments

Wagner Power Roller

Bill Bixby (RIP) pitching for Radio Shack's Tandy computers

NBA basketball--It's Fantastic

some CBS TV prime time show promos

CBS Sports promoting the Michigan 500 race, IROC boxing ft. Hector "Macho" Camacho, Sports Sone and Dads, Tour De France, and Madden's Journeys

TV spots for summer movies Gremlins, Ghostbusters, and Rhinestone

promotion of the old Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame

Apple Macintosh

Honda generators

John McEnroe (and a pre-George Constanza Jason Alexander) for Bic Razors

Joe Montana and his future wife Jennifer in a another Bic ad

Tony Randall (RIP) for Minolta Copiers

Castrol GTX

Gatorade's Thirst Aid ad

Burger King (Hungry Jack's in Australia)

Toyota's Doubting Thomases in San Francisco

that guy from WKRP In Cincinnati for Honda lawn motors

The final Army Be All You Can Be NBA profile of the 1983-84 season on Milwaukee's Marques Johnson with some Army ads.

Firestone Mastercare

Exxon gasoline (there are no Exxons in St. Louis, but Mobils, but they were separate companies prior to the merger. Exxon is Esso outside the US)

Mazda cars (or motors to you)


This was recorded by someone live as it happened from New York's CBS affiliate WCBS Channel 4. I watched the series on KMOX TV 4 (now KMOV since 1986), St. Louis' CBS affiliate, so you'll see some ads that are regional and local to the NYC metropolitan area like a cheesy one for Meadowlands Racetrack ("It's going to be a great night!") and Schaefer Beer that I did not see plus a WCBS newsbreak.

Allow me to engage in some good ole vintage schadenfruende on the Now Deservedly Crumbling Evil Laker Empire, shall I? This has gone down as one of the most deserving low points for it in its history--should've stayed down! Kareem made the mistake of grabbing a rebound in the final seconds when he got caught up in the bum rush. Someone mugged him from behind and snatched his trademark goggles. Another jumped on Kurt Rambis and later sued him for slugging the fan. The Evil Empire was disconsolate in their locker room afterwards from making their way out of the scene of the crime. Magic and Michael Cooper were in the shower with their jerseys on. More thoughts will come from me later on, particularly at the end. Gotta love the locker room celebration. Enjoy!