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Top 5 Rookie playoff debuts in NBA history

Avdhi Bhalgat
Top 5 / Top 10
Modified 20 Dec 2019, 17:18 IST

Bird took the N
Bird took the NBA by storm in his rookie season

The NBA playoffs have gone through a long and ever-changing history. In 1947 and 1948 the Eastern and Western Champions played a seven-game series to decide one finalist and the other came from best of three series with the four runner-ups.

Further, between 1951 and 1953, the Division finals were a best of five series and the postseason was cut from eight teams to six.

With many more changes in between, the current format was only introduced in 1984 as the 16 team knockout and in 2003; it was made to be best of seven. Each year the NBA has had new teams and with that the prospect of the rookies doing better than ever.

The beautiful thing about rookie playoff debuts is that some of their first season's records have been unfathomable for even seasoned players, and taking that into the playoffs does not only pay-off for them but also the entire team. Here are the best rookie playoff debuts of all time.

#5 Michael Jordan, 1985

Michael Jordan, 1980
With 38 wins, Jordan helped earn the seventh seed for the team

Stats : 4 Games, 29.3 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 8.5 APG

Jordan played for the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference on his first season. With 38 wins, he helped earn the seventh seed for the team. The rookie of the year had made himself a major factor in the team's success against the mighty Bucks.

Against the Bucks, he dropped an impressive 30 points and 12 assists in game two alone. Further, in game three, he helped his team to his first playoff win with 35 points, eight rebounds and seven assists.

Unfortunately, this is where he saw his first postseason come to an end, with a game 4 loss. Despite the playoff exit, this proved that Jordan was not only a regular season start but also a postseason marvel.

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Published 21 Aug 2018, 20:40 IST
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