Biggest NBA Rivalries over the History of Basketball Posted on November 25, 2020 by Natashia Broome Even though the National Basketball Association (NBA) is an American organization, its tournaments, players and teams are known all over the world. With its first ever season beginning in 1949, it is still quite young compared to other mainstream sports. However, this doesn’t mean that it hasn’t had its fair share of rivalry in the past few decades. For years, players, fans and teams have been staunchly divided. Let’s take a look at some of the NBA’s biggest rivalries in its history.Isiah Thomas and Michael JordanIsiah Thomas was the leader of the Detroit Pistons when legendary basketball player Michael Jordan was still a rookie in the Chicago Bulls. Although his professional basketball career had only just begun, it was clear that Michael Jordan had immense talent – so much so that he was invited to play in the 1985 All-Star game.However, Isiah Thomas was not interested in helping Jordan advance his career. Instead, he engineered a plan to freeze Jordan out entirely. Thomas ensured that his opportunities were limited throughout the game. Word of Thomas’ plan eventually got out, and so began one of the https://australianbettingsites.org/nba/’s most bitter rivalries. In 1992, Jordan joined the US Olympic team, while Thomas was left behind. This rivalry even continued long after both of their basketball careers had ended.Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles LakersThe Boston Celtics and the LA Lakers have met in the NBA finals 12 times, the most of any team in any sport in any championship. The Celtics have had star players like Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Robert Parish and Sam Jones.The Lakers have also featured renowned players throughout the years, including the likes of Magic Johnson, Byron Scott, Kareen Abdul-Jabbar and Kobe Bryant. The first eight times the two teams met; The Celtics won the championship. The Lakers, however, have won three of the last four championship matchups. The very first meeting between the two happened in 1959, and the rivalry has continued since then. More recently, the Celtics won the NBA tournament in 2008, while the Lakers did the same in 2010. While both teams are legendary, the rivalry between them is too.Chicago Bulls and New York KnicksWhile Michael Jordan was part of the team, the Chicago Bulls had many rivals, probably due to Jordan’s unmatched talent on the court. One of these rivals was with the New York Knicks. The two teams met six times between 1989 and 1995, and the Bulls won five of those events. Michael Jordan was often credited as being able to hold the Knicks off in the final moments of the game.Despite coming out on the short end more often than not, the Knicks never conceded that the Bulls were a stronger team. The only time that the Knicks were victorious against the Bulls was when Jordan took a hiatus from basketball in order to focus on baseball instead. However, once the Knicks reached the finals, they were beaten by the Houston Rockets. This rivalry remains one of the most legendary in NBA history.