Los Angeles Lakers

#NBATogetherLive: Rookie Magic Johnson leads Los Angeles Lakers to 1980 NBA championship

With Kareem Abdul-Jabbar out with a sprained ankle suffered the game prior, Magic Johnson turned in one of the most iconic NBA Finals performances in 1980.

In Game 6, against the Philadelphia 76ers, the Los Angeles Lakers rookie jumped center, played every position and poured in 42 points, 15 rebounds, and seven assists in a 123-107 win to seal the NBA championship.

Johnson dominated from start to finish, scoring nine points in the final five minutes to seal the win and earn Finals MVP for the series. At 20-years-old he is the youngest player and only rookie ever to win the award.

Watch the game below:

"That was still today, my greatest game in the NBA," Johnson said years after his retirement.

Abdul-Jabbar had a dominant series through five games, averaging 33.4 points and 13.6 rebounds, but his teammates picked up the slack, with Jamaal Wilkes recording 37 points, including 25 in the second half and 10 rebounds, while Michael Cooper chipped in 16 points.

Through six Finals games, Johnson averaged 21.5 points (57.3 percent from the field), 11.2 rebounds, 8.7 rebounds, and 2.7 steals in 42.7 minutes.

The views expressed here do not represent those of the NBA or its clubs.

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