5 Biggest NBA Comebacks

In the realm of sports, few things captivate fans more than witnessing a remarkable comeback. The NBA, known for its fierce competition and high-intensity games, has seen its fair share of incredible turnarounds throughout its storied history. In this blog post, we will delve into the “5 Biggest NBA Comebacks” that have left fans awe-inspired and have become legendary tales in basketball folklore.

Biggest NBA Comebacks

The Miracle on Ice: Boston Celtics vs. Los Angeles Lakers (2008 NBA Finals)

The 2008 NBA Finals between the Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers showcased one of the most remarkable comebacks in NBA history. Heading into Game 4, the Celtics held a 2-1 series lead. However, the Lakers managed to build a significant 24-point lead in the third quarter. Just when it seemed like the Lakers would tie the series, the Celtics unleashed a stunning comeback, rallying behind their tenacious defense and clutch performances by Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. They eventually won the game 97-91 and went on to clinch the championship in Game 6.

Also Read: Best Season Starts In NBA History

The Return of King James: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Golden State Warriors (2016 NBA Finals)

The 2016 NBA Finals will forever be remembered as the year LeBron James led the Cleveland Cavaliers to a historic comeback against the Golden State Warriors. Down 3-1 in the series, the Cavaliers faced insurmountable odds against the record-breaking 73-win Warriors team. However, fueled by LeBron’s exceptional performances and a determined supporting cast, the Cavaliers fought back to win three consecutive games, culminating in a thrilling Game 7 victory. This comeback not only brought the first-ever NBA championship to Cleveland but also solidified LeBron James’ status as one of the greatest players in basketball history.

The “Linsanity” Phenomenon: New York Knicks vs. Toronto Raptors (2012)

In February 2012, a relatively unknown point guard named Jeremy Lin burst onto the NBA scene and ignited a phenomenon known as “Linsanity.” Lin, an undrafted player, became an overnight sensation as he led the struggling New York Knicks to a series of remarkable victories. One of the most memorable comebacks during this magical stretch occurred against the Toronto Raptors. Trailing by 17 points with just over a quarter left to play, Lin orchestrated a stunning turnaround, scoring 27 points and dishing out 11 assists to secure a thrilling 90-87 victory.

The Trail Blazers’ Resurgence: Portland Trail Blazers vs. Dallas Mavericks (2003 NBA Playoffs)

During the 2003 NBA Playoffs, the Portland Trail Blazers found themselves on the brink of elimination in the first round against the Dallas Mavericks. Down 3-0 in the series, the Trail Blazers faced an uphill battle to stay alive. In a display of resilience and determination, they staged a remarkable comeback, winning the next three games to force a decisive Game 7. The Trail Blazers completed their historic turnaround by defeating the Mavericks 107-95, becoming the first team in NBA history to recover from a 3-0 deficit and win a playoff series.

Also Read: 5 Best NBA Rebounders

The Dirk Nowitzki Redemption: Dallas Mavericks vs. Miami Heat (2011 NBA Finals)

The 2011 NBA Finals witnessed an extraordinary comeback by the Dallas Mavericks against the star-studded Miami Heat led by LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh. After dropping the first two games of the series, the Mavericks found themselves facing a 15-point deficit in Game 2. However, a resilient Dirk Nowitzki, the Mavericks’ cornerstone, rallied his team and orchestrated a dramatic turnaround. With clutch performances and unwavering determination, the Mavericks won four of the next five games to secure their first-ever NBA championship.


Q: Which NBA team holds the record for the biggest comeback in a single game?
A: The record for the largest comeback in a single NBA game is held by the Sacramento Kings, who overcame a 35-point deficit to defeat the Chicago Bulls on December 21, 2009.

Q: Has any NBA team ever come back from a 3-0 deficit in a playoff series?
A: No NBA team has ever managed to overcome a 3-0 deficit and win a playoff series. The Portland Trail Blazers’ comeback from a 3-0 deficit against the Dallas Mavericks in the 2003 NBA Playoffs remains the closest any team has come to achieving this feat.

Q: Who holds the record for the most points scored in a single NBA game during a comeback?
A: The record for the most points scored in a single NBA game during a comeback is held by Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors. On January 23, 2015, Thompson scored 37 points in the third quarter alone en route to a 52-point performance against the Sacramento Kings.

Q: Are comebacks more common in regular-season games or playoff games?
A: While comebacks can occur in both regular-season and playoff games, they tend to be more prevalent in playoff matchups. The high stakes and increased intensity of playoff basketball often lead to dramatic turnarounds and memorable comebacks.

Q: How do NBA teams strategize during a comeback attempt?
A: NBA teams employ various strategies during a comeback attempt, including tightening their defense, increasing offensive aggression, making strategic substitutions, and focusing on executing plays efficiently. Coaches also play a crucial role in making adjustments and motivating their players during pivotal moments of a comeback.

Q: What impact can a big comeback have on a team’s morale and momentum?
A: A significant comeback can have a profound impact on a team’s morale and momentum. It instills a sense of belief, resilience, and camaraderie among the players, often leading to increased confidence and determination in future games. Additionally, comebacks can demoralize the opposing team and create a psychological advantage for the team completing the comeback.


The “5 Biggest NBA Comebacks” highlighted in this article represent extraordinary displays of skill, determination, and teamwork. From historic championship victories to individual players’ mesmerizing performances, these comebacks have left an indelible mark on NBA history. They serve as a testament to the enduring spirit of competition and the unpredictability that makes basketball such a captivating sport. The next time you witness a team clawing their way back from a seemingly insurmountable deficit, remember the tales of these unforgettable NBA comebacks.

Leave a Comment