BY THE NUMBERS

0: Times since 2-3-2 series format was adopted for the NBA Finals in 1985 that a home team has won all of the three middle games.

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2:21: Time remaining in Game 3 when Shaquille O'Neal fouled out.

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10-9: Scoring advantage by Lakers after O'Neal fouled out.

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8: Times O'Neal fouled out in 88 games this season--the Lakers winning five of those games.

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7: Points by Robert Horry in Game 3 after O'Neal fouled out.

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15: Total points by Horry in Game 3 and in his previous four playoff games.

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3-3: Three-point shots made and attempted by Horry in Game 3.

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22-25: Free throws made and attempted by the Lakers in Game 3--a percentage of .880. The Lakers shot .668 from the free-throw line in 13 previous playoff games.

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62: Combined points by Kobe Bryant and O'Neal in Game 3. They had combined to average 59 points in the first two games.

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35: Points in Game 3 by Allen Iverson, who is averaging 35.3 for the series.

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100: Shots taken by Iverson in the series. He has made 40.

PIVOTAL GAME 3

In the seven NBA Finals that were tied, 1-1, since the 2-3-2 format was adopted in 1985, the team that won Game 3 went on to win the championship all seven times. A look at the years in which the feat was accomplished, with the Game 3 score and series outcome:

1998--Chicago 96, Utah 54

Chicago won series, 4-2

1994--*Houston 93, New York 91

Houston won series, 4-3

1992--*Chicago 94, Portland 84

Chicago won series, 4-2

1991--*Chicago 104, Lakers 96

(overtime)

Chicago won series, 4-2

1990--*Detroit 121, Portland 106

Detroit won series, 4-1

1988--*Lakers 99, Detroit 86

Lakers won series, 4-3

1985--*Lakers 136, Boston 111

Lakers won series, 4-2

* won Game 3 on opponent's court.

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