Magic and Kareem: The Most Powerful 1-2 Punch We Have Ever Seen

Brian HutchisonCorrespondent INovember 22, 2008

The best 1-2 punch in the history of the NBA is easily Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Magic is considered by Larry Bird, "The best player there ever was." He was the tallest point guard ever, and currently holds the highest assists-per-game average in NBA history. Abdul-Jabbar, known best for his famous "sky hook," was the most prolific scorer we have ever seen. When Abdul-Jabbar retired from the league, he had the most points, blocks, MVP's, All-Star appearances, and seasons played, ever.

In 1969, Lew Alcindor (Abdul-Jabbar) was selected number one overall by the Milwaukee Bucks. After going 27-55 a year before, the Bucks won 56 games and placed second in the East in their first year with Alcindor. As a rookie, Alcindor averaged almost 30 points and 15 rebounds per game.

Alcindor played the next four seasons in Milwaukee, winning one championship, and earning two NBA MVP honors. In 1975, he was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers to pair up with Johnson. Nobody realized how great of a dynasty this would eventually become.

The first year Magic and Kareem played together, the Lakers won 60 games in the regular season, and went on to win the NBA championship. After Kareem was injured in game five of the series, the young rookie (Magic) was asked to step in and play center. Not only did Magic win the opening tip off, he went on to score 42 points, 15 rebounds, and seven assists. Magic was the first rookie to ever win an NBA finals MVP award.

The Los Angeles Lakers went on win four more titles in the 1980's. Not only is this an unbelievable feat, but remember they did this in one of the most competitive decades we have ever seen. Some other NBA greats that were playing in their prime during the 1980's were; Dominique Wilkins, Larry Bird, Julius Erving, Patrick Ewing, Clyde Drexler, Charles Barkley, and George Gervin.


Magic and Kareem scored a combined:

  • 9 NBA MVP's 
  • 21 NBA All-Star selections
  • 5 NBA finals MVP's
  • 19 NBA All-First teams
  • 5 NBA championships
  • 56,094 career points (4,761 more than Jordan and Pippen)


The rest of the best (in no particular order):

  • Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen
  • Karl Malone and John Stockton
  • Bill Russell and Bob Cousy
  • Julius Erving and Moses Malone
  • Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant
  • Shawn Kemp and Gary Payton