On This Day: Michael Jordan scores 69 points on the Cleveland Cavaliers
With the NBA, MLB, NHL and other major sports leagues and sporting events suspended or canceled, on a daily basis, we will revisit some of the most unforgettable games and sports moments in history. Welcome to On This Day.
Michael Jordan, apparently, always had a vendetta against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
On May 7, 1989, in the deciding Game 5 of the First Round of the 1989 Eastern Conference playoffs, Jordan did this to Cleveland:
Jordan scored 44 points in that game, and his series-winning shot for the Chicago Bulls would go down in history as arguably Jordan’s most iconic moment.
And then, on March 28, 1990, Michael Jordan put together arguably the most iconic game of his career in another matchup with the Cavaliers:
Those 69 points were a career-high for Jordan and represented the fourth 60-point game of his career.
Almost as impressive as the 69 points Jordan scored were his 18 rebounds, 6 assists, and 4 steals. In addition, Jordan didn’t shoot a lot of threes back then, and he went 2-for-6 from deep this game. He connected on 21 of 31 shots from inside the arc, and shot 21-for-23 from the line.
Lastly, let us not forget that in the Bulls’ next game, against the New York Knicks, Jordan scored 49 points, and in the following game, against the Miami Heat, Jordan put up 47.
Prior to his outburst in Cleveland, Jordan’s first 60-point game came on April 20, 1986, when His Airness hung 63 on the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of the First Round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Boston would win the game in double overtime, 135-131, but to this day, Jordan still holds the record for most points in a playoff game.
His second 60-point game came on March 4, 1987. Jordan tallied 61 in a 125-120 win over the Detroit Pistons. And a little more than a month later, on April 16, Jordan scored 61 points on the Atlanta Hawks in a 117-114 loss for the Bulls.
After scoring 69 on Cleveland, Michael Jordan put together the fifth 60-point game of his career on Jan. 16, 1993, when he dropped 64 on the Orlando Magic in a 128-124 loss.
Surprisingly, MJ’s Bulls were only 2-3 when he scored 60 or more points.
Jordan has the third most 60-point games in NBA history, trailing only Chamberlain (32) and Bryant (6).