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NBA / Apr 17, 2014 / 4:45 pm

The 12 Most Unforgettable NBA Playoff Moments: Zeke’s 25-Point Quarter

Isiah Thomas

Isiah Thomas (Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports)

With just two days before the 2014 NBA Playoffs start, it’s a great time to look back at some of the most unforgettable moments in NBA playoff history. Magic‘s baby skyhook, Reggie‘s 8.9 seconds forever burned into New York’s pysche, Willis Reed limping onto the MSG court and into immortality, Bill Russell in EVERY Game 7 — the list could go on and on. But the good people at Guyism have complied a list of the 12 most unforgettable NBA playoff moments.

We’ve been thinking about Isiah Thomas recently since ESPN is premiering a new 30 for 30 tonight about the Bad Boys of Detroit. Zeke is many things to many different people, but first among them should be as the hall of fame point guard who played perhaps the greatest quarter of playoff basketball known to man. While we disagree when Chuck Klosterman wrote at Grantland today that Zeke is “more skilled than Magic Johnson,” we do think Thomas’ 25-point third quarter in Game 6 of the 1988 NBA Finals, “is arguably the best any human has ever played the game of basketball.” Isiah was playing on one ankle at the time.

Zeke finished with 43 points and eight assists in the game, but the Pistons still lost, and he could barely stand in Game 7, which the Pistons also lost. But the performance percolates to the surface of our cerebellum any time Thomas does something stupid in his post-playing endeavors (e.g. Knicks, FIU stint, CBA management etc.). Isiah’s enduring Game 6 in the ’88 Finals was just No. 10 on Guyism’s list, so imagine what the rest of the top 10 looks like.

(GUYISM)

What is your most unforgettable NBA playoff memory?

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  • 2cents

    Love or hate him, Zeke was pretty special. Can’t wait to see what this year’s Playoffs provides in terms of memories.

  • rayrayl

    My best remembered playoff moment is from the ABA: Super John Williamson saving the Nets from having to go to Denver to face the favored Nuggets (David Thompson et al) in a 7th game in the last ABA Championship Series. The Nets looked finished in game 6 but Super John brought them back from a huge deficit with a great 2nd 1/2 including a monstrous 4th quarter.