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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Classic Hakeem Olajuwon


In anticipation of Hakeem Olajuwon announcing his retirement from the NBA on Nov. 9, ESPN Classic will present a day of some of his greatest college and NBA games on Sunday, Nov. 10 from noon-9 p.m. ET.

Hakeem Olajuwon
Beneath a flurry of confetti, Houston's Hakeem Olajuwon waves to the fans as he leaves the court following the Rockets' final home game of 2001.
Classic Hakeem Olajuwon
Sun., Nov. 10
Noon - 9 p.m. ET

Noon - 1983 NCAA Semifinal: Houston vs. Louisville
Hakeem Olajuwon led the Cougars with five dunks, including four in the last five minutes, to highlight his 21-point, 22-rebound, eight blocked shots effort in Houston's 94-81 victory over Louisville. Olajuwon got 15 rebounds in the second half; Louisville had 14. Houston, as a team, made 13 dunks. Clyde Drexler added 21 points on 10-of-15 shooting, and had seven rebounds, six assists and four dunks.

2 p.m. - 1994 NBA Finals, Game 7
New York Knicks at Houston Rockets

The Rockets beat the Knicks 90-84 to give Houston its first major pro sports championship thanks in large part to Olajuwon. Olajuwon led his team in scoring throughout the Finals, and had 25 points, 10 rebounds, seven assists and three blocks in the decisive game seventh game. Olajuwon became the first player in NBA history to be named regular-season Most Valuable Player, Defensive Player of the Year and Finals MVP. For the series, he averaged 26.9 points, 9.1 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 3.9 blocks. In the clinching game, he again outplayed Knicks center Patrick Ewing.

Hakeem Olajuwon
Hakeem Olajuwon was one of the greatest centers to play the game.
4 p.m. - 1995 Western Conf. Finals, Game 6
San Antonio Spurs at Houston Rockets

Olajuwon had 39 points, 17 rebounds and five blocks as the Rockets beat San Antonio 100-95 to win the Western Conference finals, 4-2. Robert Horry was also key. Horry sank six 3-pointers, the last with 1:58 to play to put the defending champions ahead 97-93, then clinched the victory by making two free throws with 13 seconds remaining. He scored 22 points.

David Robinson, this season's MVP, scored 19 for San Antonio but missed two free throws and committed a fatal turnover in the final 1:06. Avery Johnson had 19 points and 10 assists for the Spurs.

6 p.m. - 1995 NBA Finals, Game 4
Orlando Magic at Houston Rockets

Hakeem Olajuwon had 35 points and 15 rebounds as the Rockets completed the unlikeliest of championship repeats, sweeping the Magic with a 113-101 victory. Olajuwon capped off the night with a 3-pointer - another unlikely occurrence - with 11.5 seconds left. Unlike last year, Olajuwon shared this championship with his college teammate and the city's hometown hero, Clyde Drexler, who after 12 seasons in the NBA savored his first taste of a title.

Drexler, who missed winning the 1983 NCAA championship with Olajuwon at Houston and made two unsuccessful trips to the NBA Finals with Portland, had 15 points, nine rebounds and eight assists for the Rockets after returning to his hometown in a Feb. 14 trade. Mario Elie added 22 points and Robert Horry 21 for Houston. For the Magic, Shaquille O'Neal and Anfernee Hardaway had 25 points each.

8 p.m. - Houston Rockets: Back-to-Back (1994-95)





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