Believe it or not, we’re now less than week away from the start of the new NBA season. After last year’s lockout debacle, it’s especially comforting to know I’ll have my League Pass to help keep me warm through another dark, rainy Portland winter. I’m sure I’ll write a bit about the season as it unfolds, but for now I thought I’d get my B-Ball juices flowing with a little NBA trivia challenge – with the winner getting a little temporary control of my gravatar.
I’ve tried to walk that fine line of making the answers (mostly) not obvious, but not so wonky that even the most casual fan couldn’t at least take a shot at making some educated guesses. You won’t find any questions along the lines of “What was Cedric Ceballos’s free throw percentage in 1993?” Some questions will ask something where the answer is dependent upon something done in a particular year, but in that case you need only answer the name of the team – you do not have to identify the year in which it was done. So for the question “Which team won the most games?,” either “Chicago” or “Bulls” is acceptable. You don’t need to say “The 1995-6 Chicago Bulls”
Whoever gets the most points will be declared the winner on Sunday morning, when I will post the answers. If you wish you may discuss with spouses, friends or coworkers. However, you should answer on your own before viewing what other people wrote down. Also, googling is strictly forbidden! So too is looking in a book, rifling through your old Sports Illustrateds or calling your local sports talk radio show. You’ll simply be on your honor not to cheat, but know that if you do and lie about it you will make the baby Jesus weep and most likely burn in a pit of fiery torment for all eternity.
The winner is allowed to pick any NBA team logo to be my gravatar for the month of November – even the Clippers. A tie will be decided by a question to be named later, if needed.
Given that it’s more than possible for multiple people to know the answers to these questions, please rot13 your answer. That’s a simple encryption that will allow the folks who want to answer these questions “fresh” to do so and also allow people who want to peek (or argue!) your answers to do so as well.
Questions after the jump.
1. Who are the only three NBA players to win back-to-back championships with two different teams? (Scoring: One point for each correct guess, minus one point for each incorrect guess. Note: negative points only go against scoring for this question.)
Bonus Question: What other notable fact do they have in common?
2. What trivial fact binds Gilbert Arenas, Manu Ginobili and Carlos Boozer?
3. Aside from being All-Stars, what unusual qualifier do the Timberwolves’ Kevin Love, the Celtic’s Rajon Rondo and the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant share with Celtic great Bill Russell?
4. Since 1980, the Philadelphia 76ers and the Dallas Mavericks have each done something just once; no other NBA team can make this claim. What is it?
5. In the history of the NBA, what is the only college to have more than two first overall draft picks?
6. Michael Jordon, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett and Gary Payton are all currently tied for an NBA record. What record would that be?
7. In the entire history of the NBA, what were both Michael Jordon and Allen Iverson – and only Michael Jordon and Allen Iverson –able to do in a single season?
8. What dubious honor went to current NBA players Dwight Howard, Rajon Ronda and Blake Griffin last year?
9. Which NBA franchise has the highest winning percentage of Game Sevens in the playoffs? Bonus Question: Which team has played in the most Game Sevens without winning a single one?
10. What is the only NBA Franchise that has never been to the playoffs while playing in the city they currently represent?
11. Which NBA team currently holds the streak for most years without making the playoffs?
12. Name the only four NBA teams that do not have a costumed mascot. (Scoring: One point for each correct guess, minus one point for each incorrect guess. Note: negative points only go against scoring for this question.)
13. Of the players that rank in the top three in terms Number of All Star appearances, how many played at one time or another for the Los Angeles Lakers? (Scoring: One point for the correct answer, plus one bonus point for each that you can name – assuming the answer is not “Zero.”)
14. It’s common knowledge that Kobe is chasing MJ’s six rings. However, in order to actually claim the title of Most Championships in the Past 40 Years he would need to beat another NBA great. Which player would that be?
15. Only one NBA team has had a six game losing streak during the regular season but still gone on to win the championship that same year. Which team was it?
16. What do the 3-Point Line, the Slam Dunk Contest, and Dr. J all have in common?
17. Aside for the fact that they are foreign-born players, what do Australian native Andrew Bogut, Italian native Andrea Bargnani and Nigerian native Michael Olowokandi all have in common?
18. Which NBA team has produced the most NBA Slam Dunk Champions?
19. Who is the only white NBA Slam Dunk Champion?
20. Name the only NBA color commentator to ever say in a major motion picture, “Feel these nipples!”