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Forty Years Ago, Earvin (42) and Jamaal Wilkes (37) Led A Lakers’ Title

May 16, 2020

Forty years have passed since rookie Earvin “Magic” Johnson scored 42 points and Jamaal Wilkes had 37, to lead the Los Angeles Lakers to their second L.A. crown, winning a delayed tape telecast, game 6, in Philadelphia vs the 76ers.

The Lakers were without their great center, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, but led by Johnson, who became an NBA great that night and eventually an all-time player, went to Philadelphia and won the crown.

Among the many Lakers’ contributors that night was reserve guard and rarely used, Brad Holland, who hit some big shots.

I was in room 302 of a Howard Johnson’s hotel, watching the game live as it was shown live in Los Angeles and Philadelphia and recall listening to the great Lakers’ broadcaster, Chick Hearn.

Hearn in calling the game with ex-Lakers player, Keith Erickson, intoned “the layup” properly raising his voice, as Mr. Wilkes shot. It was more than once and shots from twenty plus feet, but Chick called it, “the layup” and each time he did, Wilkes made the shot.


It looks like the great Jamaal Wilkes #52 is about to shoot. Greg Ballard, a member of the ’78 Bullets title team, is defending.

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