Julius Erving - The Greatest Game In Basketball History
The Greatest Game in Basketball History
It became increasingly more evident that the two competing leagues would merge by the 1975-76 season, but not before Erving played what is commonly considered one of the greatest games in basketball history. The ABA's final championship series between the New York Nets and the Denver Nuggets would come down to a final game in which the Nets would trail by twenty points but come back due in large part to the individual performance of Erving. Erving averaged 37.7 points in that championship series which would serve as his farewell to the ABA and his introduction to the newly expanded NBA. He won the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award for the season and ranked first in scoring, fifth in rebounding, seventh in assists, third in steals and seventh in blocked shots. In short, Erving did it all, even becoming the first player to win a league wide slam dunk contest that year.
Offered a contract with the Nets, Erving turned it down and held out for a better offer before landing in Philadelphia with the 76ers. The 76ers were a talented team full of self-serving egos and little regard for team play. In his first year there, Philadelphia would go to the finals and lose to the Portland Trailblazers after winning the first two games of the series. It was after two disappointing seasons that the 76ers' management decided to unload their highly priced stars and build the team around Erving.