Great at No. 8
Here’s the five No. 8 seeds that upset No. 1 seeds since the NBA went to its current playoff format in 1984:
Denver over Seattle 3-2, 1994: The 42-victory Nuggets beat the 63-victory SuperSonics, thanks to Dikembe Mutombo’s eight blocked shots in the deciding fifth game in Seattle.
New York over Miami 3-2, 1999: With Tom Thibodeau as an assistant coach, the Knicks won their final three games just to reach the playoffs, then beat their archrivals in a deciding fifth game on Allen Houston’s last-second shot. The Knicks went all the way to the NBA Finals in that lockout-shortened season.
Golden State over Dallas 4-2, 2007: In their first playoffs in 13 years, Baron Davis, Stephen Jackson and the Warriors beat a 67-victory Mavs team with Don Nelson beating his former boss, Mavs owner Mark Cuban.
Memphis over San Antonio 4-2, 2011: The Grizzlies won a playoff series for the first time in their 16-year history and what a time to do it, beating the mighty Spurs in what was something of a coming-out party at “the Grindhouse” for Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol and Mike Conley.
Philadelphia over Chicago 4-2, 2012: Thibodeau and the Bulls went 50-16 in the lockout-shortened regular season, then went home early after first Derrick Rose and then Joakim Noah went out injured.