This Day in Jazz History - June 1, 1997

by Bill Lea

The 1997 NBA Finals would pit the two best teams in the NBA against each other and they would not disappoint as the series will be remembered as one of the greatest ever. Game one in Chicago went back-and-forth from the opening tip all the way until the final buzzer when Michael Jordan hit a jumper over Bryon Russell's outstretched hand as time expired to give the Bulls the victory 84-82. The Jazz were led by their hall-of-fame duo-newly crowned MVP Karl Malone poured in 23 points while grabbing 15 rebounds while John Stockton had 16 points and dished out 12 assists in the game. Utah led by four points at halftime thanks largely to their bench who outscored Chicago's 23-12 for the game. In the end, the Bulls would come out on top thanks to strong performances from Jordan and Scottie Pippen. Pippen finished the game with 27 points, nine rebounds and four blocks while Jordan had 31 points and eight assists.