There were many great individual seasons throughout NBA history, however, today we’ll take a trip down the memory lane and the 1993/94 season. It was perhaps one of the most dominant seasons in NBA history and Hakeem Olajuwon was the player who’s performances from that season will be very well remembered for years to come.
This was one year after Michael Jordan retired from the NBA, and Rockets like many other teams in the league saw this as an opportunity to make the push in order to win the championship. The west was stacked with good teams and so was the east, but Hakeem and the Rockets had other things in mind.
That year Hakeem won the MVP, DPOY, and FMVP all during the course of one season at the age of 31. During the regular season, Hakeem averaged 27.3 points, 11.9 rebounds & 3.6 assists showing a range of moves in the offense. Alongside his offensive abilities, Hakeem was tremendously intelligent on defense and a complete nightmare for the opposing players. During the MVP season almost 2 steals and over 3 blocks per game.
His playoff run that season was exceptional and Hakeem became the first and only NBA player who actually won the title with a big supporting cast around him. None of his teammates was an All-Star that season or even a Hall-of-Famer. Hakeem would bring his A-game every night during the playoffs and he led the Rockets in all 5 major statistical categories (pts, reb,ast,stl). He averaged 29 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists to go alongside 4 blocks and almost 2 steals per game while at the same time being extremely efficient from the field.
While Hakeem, in one hand, was dominant on both ends of the floor his teammates weren’t of much help because his 2nd, rd, and 4th scoring options were all shooting under 43% from the field.
During that run, he also faced a lot of great opponents and Hall-of-Fame players like Charles Barkley, Karl Malone, and Patrick Ewing. Hakeem outplayed all of them by a large margin which can be seen by their low shooting percentage during those series. All of them were shooting less than 45% with Ewing being completely outplayed was shooting a subpar 36% from the floor.
He almost single-handedly brought his team the NBA championship in the finals when he capped off his illustrious regular season and the playoffs with a dominant performance against Patrick Ewing and the New York Knicks. Hakeem averaged 27 points, 9 rebounds, 3,5 assists and 4 blocks per game shooting 50 percent from the field. During that finals series, Robert Horry, Vernon Maxwell and Sam Cassel were the other guys scoring on that time, however, all were shooting very poor from the field.
Hakeem’s 1993/94 season should be celebrated as one the most spectacular seasons ever by an NBA player in which he won the MVP, DPOY, FMVP with such class and sportsmanship. He did everything the team needed in order to secure the title, even when he didn’t have another All-Star on his team but to be fair a bunch of solid role players who were perfectly implemented into the system around Hakeem.
There were numerous great seasons by various NBA players, however, if someone says this is the best one in the history of the NBA, I personally wouldn’t disagree with that.