When Not Even An Injury Stops You: Legendary Doncic Playoff Performances

From Jordan's mythical flu game to Willis Reed's seventh in the 1970s Finals or Kareem's lame fourth quarter against the Sixers in 1980.


Luka Doncic's performance against the Clippers had many connotations for which it can be considered as historic. Perhaps the most important thing is to consider the context in which it occurred. He is half lame playing more minutes than ever in his career, without Porzingis by his side, against one of the favorites to the ring and with the threat of going 3-1 down in the series, which in the vast majority of occasions means an elimination de facto. Of all these inconveniences, the injury to the left ankle is the one that reminds us of other games that are already part of the NBA legend. Encounters in which its protagonists played the guy in the playoffs going out to court far from 100%, when not directly injured, and in which they were decisive in the final result. This is a compilation of some of them:

Willis Reed turns Madison on by surprise

The Knicks center and captain had been injured in Game 5 of the Finals against the Lakers and was unable to play the sixth, when the Angelenos tied the series at 3 with a monstrous performance from Wilt Chamberlain at his wide (45 points and 27 rebounds). The seventh was played at Madison Square Garden and during the warm-up before the game Willis Reed stayed in the locker room. Everything indicated that he would not be in the game, but then, when the players left through the tunnel Reed was among them. The public reaction was explosive. A wave of optimism and energy swept through the stands and washed over the Knicks players, who were going to win the ring 113-99. The pivot would only score two baskets, the first two of the match, but his mere presence changed the atmosphere of the match and was decisive in the final result.Kareem unstoppable with his ankle like a ball

That Kareem Abdul-Jabar is one of the best players in history anyone knows. That place of honor was to be achieved thanks to such memorable performances as the fifth game of the 1980 Finals against the Sixers. He finished at 40 + 15 + 4 after bursting his ankle after poor support well into the third quarter and with 65-65 on the scoreboard. In the locker room, the Lakers doctors only gave him two options, go to the hospital at that moment or after watching the end from the side. Kareem asked if the foot could be damaged further and they replied that it was so bad that, with a good bandage, it could not get much worse. So he decided to go back, block the pain ("hypnotize himself," the witnesses said), put a Forum on its feet that roared when it saw him appear and contributed 14 points and 6 rebounds in that decisive last quarter. Without jumping, on one foot and with the final 2 + 1 with the equalized score (103-103) 33 seconds from the end. A god of basketball.

Bernard King's Dislocated Finger Series

In the first round of the 1984 playoffs, the Knicks clashed with the Pistons. Bernard King, a scorer as there have been few in history, was going to play that series with two dislocated fingers. The New Yorkers were going to win it 3-2 and King would earn a place in the history of the playoffs thanks to a superhuman performance, averaging 40 points per game with a 60% accuracy in the shot. An attack legend at its best ... save for a couple of fingers. Although he did not care exactly the same.The Day Isiah Thomas Became a Legend

Although Isiah Thomas was already an NBA star when the Pistons reached the 1988 Finals, it was the sixth game of that series that made him a legend. After scoring 14 points in a row in the third quarter he was going to injure his ankle by stepping on a teammate's foot after a jump. He went to the bench, returned 35 seconds later and was going to finish the quarter with 25 points (record for most points in a quarter in the Finals) and 11/13 shooting.

Michael Jordan's flu match

One of the most talked about encounters ever. Michael Jordan jumped onto the court in Salt Lake City in Game 5 of the Finals with the flu, after not getting any sleep the night before. Dehydrated and without strength, Jordan was going to sign a performance to remember: 38 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 steals, 1 block and the decisive triple with less than a minute to go.

Paul Pierce and the knee maneuver

In 2008 the great NBA classic was repeated many years later: a final between the Lakers and the Celtics. The seconds were to lay the first stone of what would become the last ring of the franchise in a first game remembered for Paul Pierce's knee injury. An injury that still today there are those who maintain that it never happened and that it was a strategy of the player to heat the atmosphere, imitating precisely what happened with Willis Reed in New York and also against the Lakers 38 years before. The fact is that after advancing the track he was going to return minutes later with an aroused audience and the first thing he was going to do was score two consecutive triples. The forward finished the game with 22 points and that maneuver, real or fictitious, would be the first nail in the Lakers' coffin.

Steve Nash making the Spurs dizzy with one eye

In the 2010 semifinals the Suns had the tie on track against the Spurs. They sent 3-0 and it is not every day that you put a 4-0 on a team like that. The Suns were going to do it, but the most impressive thing was that they did it with their star player playing the last 12 minutes with only one eye. How it sounds. Steve Nash received an elbow in the third quarter that forced him to go to the locker room. When he returned to the track, his eye was so swollen that he could see practically nothing. But that didn't stop him from scoring 10 points, giving 5 assists and dancing to the Spurs defense with a whole series of technical actions and passes without looking. An unforgettable performance.

Chris Paul's redemption to the limp

Chris Paul is one of the best foundations ever. However, his lack of success in the playoffs has made him lose credit for many fans. But he also had his star moment in the playoffs. Specifically in 2015, when in the seventh game of the first round he was going to put the basket that qualified the Clippers for the semifinals. He did it in a heroic action, as he had an injury to the back of his thigh that made him play with a limp during the last minutes. Even so, he managed to get a pitch with a second to go, practically on the limp and against the defense of Tim Duncan.

Photos from as.com
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