Milwaukee Bucks 1971 Championship

BACK ROW: Trainer Arnie Garber, Greg Smith, Marvin Winkler, Jeff Webb, Bob Grecean, Gary Freeman, Assistant Coach Tom Nissalke, Head Coach Larry Costello. FRONT ROW: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jon McGlocklin, Lucius Allen, McCoy McLemore, Bill Zompf, Bob Dandridge, Oscar Robertson, Dick Cunningham.


No expansion team in pro sports history earned a championship quicker than the Bucks, who captured the 1971 NBA title in just their third season of existence. The 1970-71 Bucks posted a 66-16 regular-season mark under Coach Larry Costello. In the postseason, they beat San Francisco (4-1) and the Los Angeles Lakers (4-1) before sweeping Baltimore in four straight for the title.

REGULAR SEASON (66-16) - 1ST, MIDWEST DIVISION - PLAYOFFS (12-2, CHAMPIONS)

Player G-GS MIN FG-FGA PCT FT-FTA PCT TR AST PF-DQ PTS AVG
Abdul-Jabbar 82-82 3288 1063-1843 .577 470-681 .690 1311 272 264-4 2596 31.7
Robertson 81-81 3194 592-1193 .496 385-453 .80 462 668 203-0 1569 19.4
Dandridge 79-79 2862 594-1167 .509 264-376 .702 632 277 287-4 1452 18.4
McGlocklin 82-80 2891 574-1073 .535 144-167 .862 223 305 189-0 1292 15.8
Smith 82-79 2428 409-799 .512 141-213 .662 589 227 284-5 959 11.7
McLemore (TOT) 86-48 2254 303-787 .385 204-261 .782 568 206 235-2 810 9.4
McLemore (MIL) 28-1 415 49-133 .368 34-41 .829 105 30 66-1 132 4.7
Boozer 80-5 1775 290-645 .450 148-181 .818 435 128 216-0 728 9.1
Allen 61-3 1162 178-398 .447 77-110 .700 152 161 108-0 433 7.1
Freeman 41-0 335 62-122 .508 28-38 .737 98 31 63-0 152 3.7
Winkler 3-0 14 3-10 .300 2-2 1.000 4 2 3-0 8 2.7
Cunningham 76-0 675 81-195 .415 39-59 .661 2557 43 90-1 201 2.6
Greacen 2-0 43 1-12 .083 3-7 .429 6 13 7-0 5 2.5
Webb 29-0 300 27-78 .346 11-15 .733 24 19 33-0 65 2.2
Zopf 53-0 398 49-135 .363 20-36 .556 46 73 34-0 118 2.2
Bucks 82 19780 3972-7803 .509 1766-2379 .742 4344 2249 1847-15 9710 118.4

Highlights

In the first season of the NBA’s four-division alignment, the Bucks ran away with the Midwest division, setting an NBA record (since broken) of 66 wins. The Bucks also set NBA records for home wins (34), road wins (28), field goal percentage (.509), field goals made (3,972) and assists (2,249).
From Feb. 6-March 8, 1971, the Bucks won 20 straight games, an NBA record (since broken).
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was the league’s MVP, leading the NBA in scoring with 31.7 ppg. He finished second in FG% (.577) and fourth in rebounds (16.0).
Oscar Robertson, in his first season with the Bucks, dished a then-team-record 668 assists and was named an All-Star for the 11th consecutive year.
On April 4, 1971, the Bucks beat San Francisco 136-86, marking their biggest playoff win.
The Bucks dispatched San Francisco and Los Angeles in five games and blasted Baltimore in four straight for the NBA Championship, marking only the second time in league history that the title series ended in a sweep.
In winning the World Championship in only their third season, the Bucks went further, faster, than any expansion team in the history of major professional sports.
Playoff Record

Beat San Francisco, Conference Semifinals, 4-1

Beat Los Angeles, Conference Finals, 4-1

Beat Baltimore, NBA Championship Finals, 4-0

Honors

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – NBA Most Valuable Player, NBA All-Star Team, All-NBA Team, and All-Defensive Second Team

Oscar Robertson – NBA All-Star Team and All-NBA Second Team

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