Round: Western Conference Finals
Dates: May 20-June 4
Winner: Lakers, 4- 3
Both teams look back on this series knowing the outcome probably sealed their fate. The Blazers were an unbelievably deep and talented team, led by Scottie Pippen and Rasheed Wallace. The Lakers were home to the league's two greatest talents in Shaq and Kobe, but for years, they'd failed to fulfill expectations.

When the two clashed in the Conference Finals, Los Angeles took a 3-1 series lead, yet couldn't finish off Portland in Game 5 or 6, and suddenly found themselves down 15 points headed into the fourth quarter of Game 7. Then in one of the most memorable collapses in playoff history, the Blazers missed 13 consecutive field goals, paving the way for a Laker rally and the iconic Kobe to Shaq oop that sealed the deal and started a dynasty.