The Lakers 62-30 still coached by Pat Riley and had as general manager Jerry West faced the Boston Celtics 63-19 coached by K. C. Jones with Jan Volk as their new general manager as Red Auerbach had moved up to president of the team.
The Lakers were led in scoring by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 22.0 points per game and 7.9 rebounds per game, Magic Johnson 18.3 ppg, and 12.6assists per game, James Worthy 17.6 ppg and Byron Scott 16.0 ppg.
The Celtics were led by Larry Bird 28.7 ppg, 10.5rpg, Dennis Johnson 15.7 ppg, 6.8 apg, Robert Parish 17.6 ppg, 10.6 rpg, Kevin McHale 19.8 ppg, Danny Ainge 12.9 ppg and Cedric Maxwell with 11.1 ppg.
In game one in the Boston Gardens the Celtics got out to a good start and led 79-49 at the half to coast to a 148-114 victory. Scott Wedman and Kevin McHale had 26 points each for the winners while Larry Bird and Danny Ainge each contributed 19 points. James Worthy led the Lakers with 20 points and Magic Johnson added 19.
Game two was still in Boston and the Lakers cameout strong and led 64-46 at halftime to hold off the Celtics in the second half for a 109-102 win to tie theseries at one game each. But more importantly the Lakers now had home court advantage. They were led by 37 year old Kareem Abdul-Jabbar playing in his seventeenth season who scored 30 points and pulled down 17 rebounds while Larry Bird led Boston with 30 points and Robert Parish had 18. Micheal Cooper also had 22 points for the Lakers as the series goes to LA.
In game three in the Forum the Celtics took a 29-25 first quarter lead but the Lakers dominated the rest of the game to win 136-111 as again Abdul-Jabbar led the Lakers with 26 points and 14 rebounds, James Worthy had 29 points and Magic Johnson had 16 assists.
For Boston Kevin McHale had 31 points and Larry Bird 20 as the Lakers take a two games to one lead in the series.
Still in LA the Celtics eked out a107-105 victory in the closest game of the series as McHale, Dennis Johnson and Larry Bird led Boston with 28, 27 and 26 points respectively. Magic had a triple double for LA with 20points, 12 rebounds and 11 assistsas Boston tied the series at two games each.
Game five still at the Forum was pivotal as the Lakers built a 64-51 halftime lead which the Celtics could not surmount to win 120-111 as Abdul-Jabbar again had an outstanding game with 16 of 28 from the field for 36 points, James Worthy had 33 and Magic Johnson 26 points and 17 assists.
For Boston Dennis Johnson had 22, McHale 24, Parish 26 and Bird 20 as the Lakers take a 3 games to 2 lead in the series needing only one more win for the NBA title.
In Boston gamesix was close through the first two quarters but the Lakers surged in the third quarter to hold off the Celts for a 111-100 victory to win the NBA title.Kareem Abdul-Jabbar scored 29 points and won the series MVP award for his efforts, while James Worthy contributed 28 points. For Boston McHaleled with 32 and Bird had 28.
It was the Lakers first NBA title victory against the Celtics in eight tries.
The Celtics would be back the following year with the addition of Bill Walton to their lineup while the Lakers returned in 1987.
Ron Griffitts a contributing columnist for the Daily Advocate