On Tuesday, the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the New England Patriots, 27-24, to advance to the Super Bowl. The Patriots and Eagles have been two of the worst teams in the NFL for the last few years. With these two teams facing off for the NFL championship, most had written the Eagles off. The underdog Eagles were the underdogs for about a month, but when the chips were down, they took out the two time defending champions.
The first thing you notice about Stephen Curry is his smile. The Golden State Warriors superstar is widely recognized for his infectious grin and bright personality, and his infectious smile has served him well on the basketball court. In addition to being a shooter extraordinaire, he is also one of the most quotable players in the league. He is known for his ability to relate and connect with players and fans while on the court, and during press conferences.Indiana Pacers legend Reggie Miller played against Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and John Starks during his 18-year NBA career. His most iconic fights, however, were with a man who was never (officially) in the field: Spike Lee.
During the Pacers/Knicks games at Madison Square Garden, the two collided harder than anyone else in the building. The sniper and the filmmaker had such a rivalry that they even made bets during the playoffs. Miller explained to Dan Patrick and Jimmy Kimmel the reason for the feud.
Spike Lee and Reggie Miller. Photo: Noel Vasquez/GC Images
In the 1990s, the NBA’s Eastern Conference consisted of the Chicago Bulls and everyone else. In the rest of the group, the Pacers and the Knicks were the two best teams of the decade. One of these teams was in six of the eight Eastern Conference finals between 1993 and 2000. Three times – 1994, 1999, 2000 – the teams have met in this series.
Brooklyn-born Oscar winner Spike Lee was the New York Knicks’ most famous fan in the 1990s – and still is today. From his spot on the field, across the bench from the Knicks, Lee has cheered, booed and said mean things for nearly 30 years.
The most famous interaction between Millais and Lee took place during the 1994 NBA playoffs. The Knicks and Pacers battled for a spot in the NBA Finals – a spot the Knicks ultimately won – and Miller put on a show in Game 5.
After trailing by 12 points entering the fourth quarter, the Pacers outscored the home team 35-16 in the final period. Miller scored 25 points, just four short of the NBA playoff single-quarter scoring record.
Miller had been feuding with Lee the whole time, who had already come down hard on the Pacers star when the Knicks were winning. The most memorable moment was when Miller wrapped his arms around his neck and made a universal gasp sign when the Knicks took a big lead.
Miller appeared on the Dan Patricavo Show during the 2021 NBA Playoffs and talked about the origins of his feud with Lee. It all started with Cheryl screaming and Cheryl being better and then it all started, Miller said, referring to her older sister, one of the greatest basketball players of all time.
Patrick asked what exactly Lee would say, and Miller replied:
He’s like this: Put the wig on! Cheryl Miller’s here! I just think: Is he really saying that? Is he really saying that? I said: Okay, if you want to talk, if you want to pay all that money for expensive chairs, you gotta join us, Spike. And I made it part of the game.
In 2015, Miller appeared onJimmy Kimmel Liveand repeated these comments and talked about his shared relationship with Lee. I’ll say this about Spike, bless him. I love him, he admitted. But he talks too much. He talks too much.
Then he explained how the famous exchange took place:
When you try to play the game, you hear the fans, you hear you get booed and things like that, but Spike, he takes it a little bit personally. He makes it personal, so I decided to get him on the field and in the game.
Although Miller is gone and he and Lee seem to have buried the hatchet, the guard can’t help but mock the director. During the 2021 playoffs, Miller named Lee a fan favorite when he left the Knicks in an early loss against the Atlanta Hawks.
Miller is on the list of the greatest NBA players who have never won an NBA Finals. After years of waiting between Jordan and the Bulls in the East and the Houston Rockets in the West, he finally got the chance to play in the 2000 Finals.
Unfortunately for Miller, this was the first year that Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant made it to the NBA Finals together. The dynamic duo not only defeated the Pacers to win their first championship together, but also the next two.
Many other top players who never won a championship belong to the Miller era thanks to Jordan’s dominance. Charles Barkley, Karl Malone, John Stockton, Dominic Wilkins and Patrick Ewing are on that list.
Elgin Baylor, Steve Nash, Allen Iverson, Russell Westbrook and James Harden also lay claim to this unwanted honor.
Another player who is currently on the list, but could be leaving soon, is Chris Paul. The Phoenix Suns, where the point guard has long been an outlier, are now in the NBA Finals, tied with the Milwaukee Bucks in two games.
All statistics provided by Basketball Reference
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