Bucks County
Knights 43-39(0-6)

Blizzard 60-22(6-0)

Score (click for boxscore) Game MVP Hi Points Hi Rebounds Hi Assists
1. Blizzard 130, Knights 113 Clyde Drexler 39 Larry Bird 13 Mark Aguirre 11 Dirk Minniefield
2. Knights 161, Blizzard 153 Larry Bird 34 Larry Bird 19 Karl Malone 10 L.Bird/K.Malone
3. Blizzard 140, Knights 133 Clyde Drexler 30 Clyde Drexler 14 Karl Malone 11 Larry Bird
4. Blizzard 127, Knights 117 Karl Malone 27 Larry Bird 16 Karl Malone 10 Larry Bird
5. Blizzard 141, Knights 126 Tom Chambers 45 Larry Bird 12 John Battle 11 Danny Young
Buffalo wins series 4-1

Game 1 – Mark Aguirre had 34 points and Clyde Drexler added 26 as Buffalo defeated Bucks County. The Blizzard held BCK to 39.8% shooting from the floor and added 15 block shots while enjoying the added benefit of attempting 36 Free Throws to 12 for the visitors. Larry Bird led all scorers with 39 points. Drexler also had 11 rebounds, 8 assists, 5 steals and 3 blocks to be named Most Valuable Player.

Game 2 – In a game that was played on steroids, Bucks County used a 54 point 4th quarter to defeat Buffalo. Larry Bird went wild in the final period, scoring 24 of his game high 34 points as the Knights shot 57.7% from the floor for the game while placing 8 players in double figures. Not to be outdone, Buffalo also had 8 players with double figure points, 4 of which had more than 20 (Tom Chambers 25, Bill Cartwright 23, Mark Aguirre 20 and Karl Malone with a triple-double: 22 points, 19 rebounds, 10 assists). However the Blizzard hit on only 45% of their FGA.

Game 3 – Entering these playoffs, the 60-win Buffalo Blizzard had missed out on the division title and a first-round postseason bye by one singular game. After recently splitting two games on its home court in its opening #3 versus #6 West playoff matchup against Bucks County, it became crystal clear that it could pay a dear price for falling short during the regular season: after winning the opener of this series 130-113, the Blizzard frittered away a 118-107 lead after three quarters during game two and got shockingly blown out of its own building at the end, surrendering 54 fourth-quarter points in a 161-153 collapse that evened the series at one apiece. Losing its home court advantage, the Blizzard traveled to Bucks County on April 21 for Game 3 and the Blizzard made tweaks to tighten up its defense, especially after its meltdown the prior game: for one, defensively challenged World B. Free, despite all his offensive prowess, was kept in street clothes and entirely out of the Buffalo lineup. Playing cross-state in this third game, the Blizzard again had a lead after three quarters — this time it held a 104-91 edge — but the Buffalo defensive-minded maneuvers failed to prevent yet another late, Larry Bird-inspired Bucks County charge. Buffalo extended the lead by 4:54 left in regulation, 131-116, only to watch that sizable margin shrivel to nothing. The Knights, fueled by an electrifyingly raucous Palestra home crowd, embarked on an incredulous 17-4 run in the next three minutes, capped by a Bird fastbreak basket that decimated Buffalo’s large lead down to just one measly basket, 135-133 with 1:52 left in the fourth. During the stretch, the Knights had leveraged a three from Bird and converted multiple free throws with the clock stopped to claw right back in it. Anxious moments followed for both squads. Tom Chambers missed a shot for Buffalo, giving the Knights the opportunity to come all the way back from its 15-point deficit and tie. But Walter Berry and Ralph Sampson also missed shots up close in the same ensuing offensive sequence, with Chambers finally securing the defensive rebound. When Clyde Drexler missed the next field goal attempt for the Blizzard, the Knights were again looking to tie with just one minute remaining. The ball – as was to be expected in such a pivotal moment – found itself in Larry Legend’s hands. But Bird’s decision to pass was disastrous, intercepted by Drexler who was off to the races, and he finished a 3 on 2 breakaway, slamming it home for a four-point Buffalo lead. When another Berry miss was followed by another Drexler basket, this time from the perimeter, the Blizzard had sealed the victory. The eventual final was 140-133 as Bucks County failed to record another point the final minute and a half after coming within that tying basket. Drexler was the Blizzard’s MVP, with 30 points, nine rebounds and 10 assists to go with his end-of-game heroics. John Battle added 24 for the Blizzard, who overcame being narrowly outshot (.528 to .524). Bird scored 18 of his team-leading 29 points in the fourth quarter when Bucks County nearly rallied back. Berry despite the late misses also shined for the Knights, adding 28. The teams brace for Game 4 again at the Palestra as Bucks County seeks a win on its court to tie things at two. The presumed-favorite Blizzard may have held on for dear life in Game 3 to seize a slight series lead — but Buffalo was served notice this matchup remains for all intents and purposes a complete toss-up, still anyone’s to claim with these teams demonstrating through three games they are in fact evenly-matched.

Game 4 – Buffalo entered Game 4 at the Palestra up 2-1 against a proud Bucks County Knights squad that has played splendidly as the sixth seed to make this a fierce, competitive series. The Knights rallied dramatically in Game 2 with a 53-point fourth quarter blitz to even the series at 1-1, then they nearly stole Game 3 by whittling a 15-point deficit very late in the fourth quarter down to two before the Blizzard held on for a razor-thin victory. Judging from the prior games, Game 4 offered the promise of a wild, brutal and compelling slugfest. To say it lived up to that billing would be an extraordinary understatement. The Knights once again came back in astonishing fashion: The hosts after a surprisingly sluggish start, trailed 71-41 at intermission but rallied miraculously in the second half of this contest to grab its first lead of the game 111-109 with 4:26 left to play in regulation after a Larry Bird basket. As with the prior two games, this contest from there was decided in the final minutes of regulation. With 3:22 left after the teams had traded points, Bird dished off to Scottie Pippen who dunked to tie the score at 115-115 and the assist assured Bird of a triple double for the evening (a game-high 27 points along with 10 rebounds and 10 assists). After a miss by Bird on the Knights’ next possession prevented Bucks County from reclaiming the lead, Clyde Drexler scored to put Buffalo ahead by two, 117-115. Then on the next Bucks County possession, Drexler stole the ball and passed off to Mark Aguirre on a fastbreak basket that put Buffalo ahead 119-115 lead with 2:35 in the fourth. A pair of Dudley Bradley free throws with 2:17 left reduced the margin back down to two. But Karl Malone responded with a slam dunk on the next Buffalo possession and Drexler scored the last six points of the contest (four off free throws that iced the game). Bucks County, which rallied so valiantly and dramatically, fell just barely to Buffalo 127-117, a final score that hardly told the story. The Knights sustained a 46-15 opening first-quarter blow and as late as 8:32 remaining in the third quarter, they still trailed 79-55. But the home squad dominated the Blizzard from there in nearly coming all the way back. Down 100-85 with 9:57 remaining, the Knights ripped off a 26-9 run within the next five and a half minutes to claim that short-lived two-point lead, their only advantage of the entire game. Ten different Knights scored in the second half in a balanced team attack that gave it a chance to pull off the miracle upset. The Blizzard, who barely survived once again, were led by game MVP Karl Malone (26 points and 16 rebounds) and Drexler and Aguirre each added 20 for Buffalo. Along with Bird, Ralph Sampson delivered an A-game performance for the Knights with 19 points, eight rebounds and three blocks. The Blizzard holds the most precarious 3-1 series lead imaginable even as it returns home for Game 5. Buffalo collapsed in Game 2 and nearly choked spectacularly in Games 3 and 4 before winning by a thread. This Blizzard squad is the team incredibly lucky enough not to be on the cusp of elimination.

Game 5 – Buffalo used a 41-point 4th quarter to seize control of a tight game and defeat Bucks County, winning the series in 5 games. The Blizzard were led by Tom Chambers with 25 points, but keys to the game was Buffalo rebounding (+25 overall….+17 offensive rebounds) and FTA (+15). Larry Bird led all scorers with 45 points.