In this page I would like to rank each of the 90s seasons, from the less interesting (no.10) to the most interesting (no.1). So, the ranking, in my view, goes like this:
10. 1998-99 (a season that was shortened due to the lock-out with most of the 90s superstars being at the end of their careers, while MJ had also retired for the second time)
9. 1991-92 (Bird was a shadow of his old self and Magic announced he had contracted HIV before the start of the season – however that year’s all-star game was excellent)
8. 1994-95 (Jordan’s return near the end of the season and Olajuwon’s heroics in the play-offs were the highlights of an otherwise boring season – Grant Hill’s arrival was also interesting)
7. 1989-90 (Pistons beating the Bulls again and David Robinson’s rookie year that elevated the Spurs were the highlights of the season – Dominique winning the slam dunk contest was cool also)
6. 1993-94 (first time the NBA is without MJ in the 90s, however, the great battles between the great centers of that era, Robinson’s 71 points and Denver upsetting Seattle in the first round of the play-offs made the season pretty interesting)
5. 1996-97 (probably the best NBA draft ever with rookies with players such as Iverson, Bryant and Allen entering the league, while the Rockets were forming their version of the big-three by signing Charles Barkley, to play alongside Olajuwon and Drexler)
4. 1992-93 (the best Finals that I have ever seen and the most determined MJ that I have ever seen against a brilliant Barkley-led Suns team – plus Shaq and Zo’s arrival)
3. 1990-91 (finally the Bulls beat the Pistons and MJ plays against Magic in a dream match-up in the Finals before Magic’s first retirement- also MJ does ‘the move’ in the Finals and wins his first ever ring)
2. 1995-96 (probably the most anticipated season of them all as MJ returned for good to seek revenge from the young/talented Orlando of Shaq and Penny – Bulls break the record for most wins in regular season with 72!!!)
1. 1997-98 (I do not remember a season with so many talented, star-level players competing against each other in one season – in 1997-98 it seemed like every team had an all-star player some of them two or three – 1997-98 was the point where two generations met and played against each other; the 90s superstars with the stars of the next decade – the best all-star game of the 90s also)
Furthermore, every now and then I imagine of an 1990s NBA season that comprises of the best 90s teams of each franchise according to their true performance during the decade; a true 1990s NBA season just like the one I described in the NBA 2k90s project some time ago. By the way, the NBA 2k90s project is now possible thanks to the work of some guys that love the game and created an unbelievable mod for NBA 2k14, available to download here.
According to the rules of this blog, a league like this would not include normally the Toronto Raptors and the Vancouver Grizzles but I have decided to bend the rules, after all if there is anyone who can be above the rules of this blog that is me. So, this league would have the best 29 teams, one of each franchise, that played in the 90s.
In the following four sub-pages, one for each division of 90s NBA, I intend to present and briefly analyze the top teams of each NBA franchise that played in the 90s.