“Those are the last few minutes of Dr J’s successful professionnal basketball career. This is game 5 of the 1987 Eastern Conference First round between the Milwaukee Bucks and Erving’s Philadelphia 76ers. Dr J would end up scoring 24 points, but Charles Barkley’s no-show (5/16 shooting) against a great Jack Sikma (18 points, 21 rebounds) ended up being too much to overcome for the Sixers.”
Originally posted at Real Life Journal
A bad way for The Doctor Julius Erving to end his great sixteen-year professional basketball career as a player, in a blowout loss on the road to the Milwaukee Bucks of all teams. Because the Bucks and 76ers played a lot of great series’ and games against each other in the 1980s. And Bucks beat the 76ers in the playoffs. So this was probably one of the last ways that The Doctor wanted to end his brilliant career as perhaps the greatest all around small forward of all-time.
But his career ending this way wasn’t because of him. It wasn’t his best game obviously, but 1987 was a rough year for the 76ers that had all sorts of injuries and had to play hard just to make the Eastern Conference Playoffs. And because of all the series injuries, they were never a real threat to dethrone the defend NBA champion Boston Celtics. So it’s not surprising that Julius’s career ended this way, but it is a damn shame. It would’ve been great to see at least one more classic playoff series between the Bird Celtics and the Erving 76ers. But the Bucks weren’t going to allow that to happen.