Monday, 24 Jun 2024

Season Review: 2004-05

The 2004-05 NBA season was a year of change and excitement. With new teams and divisions, as well as significant player movements, the stage was set for an unforgettable season. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the major highlights, playoffs, and award winners of this thrilling season.

A Season of Change

Before the season even began, the NBA experienced significant changes. The Charlotte Bobcats joined the league, prompting the expansion to three divisions in each conference. The New Orleans Hornets also moved to the West and joined the Southwest Division. As a result, the Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest divisions were formed.

Player movements also made waves in the NBA. Steve Nash left Dallas to join the Phoenix Suns as a free agent, while Shaquille O’Neal was traded from the Lakers to the Miami Heat. Both players would prove instrumental in leading their teams to success throughout the season.

The Rise of Nash and O’Neal

Steve Nash’s arrival in Phoenix sparked a revolution. With his frenetic pace and incredible playmaking abilities, Nash propelled the Suns to a league-best 62 regular-season wins. His outstanding performance earned him the MVP award. In Miami, Shaquille O’Neal teamed up with young star guard Dwyane Wade, resulting in a significant improvement for the Heat, who secured the No. 1 seed in the East.

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The “Malice at the Palace”

Unfortunately, the 2004-05 season was marred by an ugly incident known as the “Malice at the Palace.” On November 19, a brawl between the Indiana Pacers and the Detroit Pistons erupted, spilling into the stands. The aftermath of the incident led to suspensions for nine players, including notable names like Ron Artest and Ben Wallace.

Playoffs and NBA Finals

In the playoffs, both the Suns and the Heat showcased their prowess and advanced to their respective conference finals. However, the San Antonio Spurs proved to be a formidable opponent for the Suns, eliminating them in six games. In the East, the Pistons faced a tough challenge from the Heat, ultimately winning in a Game 7 showdown.

The NBA Finals between the Pistons and the Spurs was a thrilling and closely contested series. In Game 5, Robert Horry of the Spurs delivered an unforgettable clutch performance, leading his team to a vital overtime victory. Behind the consistent performance of Tim Duncan, the Spurs eventually secured their third championship of the Duncan era.

Season Leaders and Award Winners

Throughout the season, several players stood out and earned recognition for their exceptional performances. Allen Iverson led the league in scoring, while Steve Nash topped the assists charts. Kevin Garnett dominated the boards, and Larry Hughes excelled in steals. Andrei Kirilenko showcased his shot-blocking skills, and Shaquille O’Neal maintained an impressive field goal percentage. Reggie Miller and Fred Hoiberg showcased their shooting prowess from the free-throw and three-point lines, respectively.

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The season also celebrated outstanding individual achievements. Steve Nash earned the Most Valuable Player award, while Emeka Okafor secured the Rookie of the Year honor. Ben Wallace was recognized as the Defensive Player of the Year, and Bobby Simmons impressed as the Most Improved Player. Ben Gordon earned the Sixth Man of the Year accolade, and Mike D’Antoni was honored as the Coach of the Year. Allen Iverson shined in the All-Star Game, winning the MVP award, while Tim Duncan earned the Finals MVP title.


Q: How many divisions were formed during the 2004-05 NBA season?
A: Three new divisions were formed: the Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest.

Q: Which players won the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award and the Finals MVP award?
A: Steve Nash of the Phoenix Suns won the MVP award, and Tim Duncan of the San Antonio Spurs was named the Finals MVP.

Q: Who were the top scorers and assists leaders during the season?
A: Allen Iverson led the league in scoring, while Steve Nash topped the assists charts.


The 2004-05 NBA season was one filled with excitement and change. With new teams and divisions, standout players, and intense playoff battles, fans were treated to a remarkable year of basketball. Steve Nash’s arrival in Phoenix and Shaquille O’Neal’s move to Miami brought new energy and success to their respective teams. The season was unfortunately marred by the infamous “Malice at the Palace” incident, but the on-court performances remained exceptional. In the end, the San Antonio Spurs emerged as the champions, led by the dominant presence of Tim Duncan. This season will always be remembered as a significant chapter in NBA history.

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