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Nique vs. Bird: An Oral History

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25 years ago, heartache swept across the narrow path that is Hawks fandom. The Atlanta Hawks had a chance to advance past the world-class Boston Celtics -- and an unforgettable duel ensued.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

From the Hawks official website, Micah Hart brings us excellence, beginning with this:

Twenty-five years ago on May 22, 1988, two Hall of Famers staged what is widely considered to be the greatest one-on-one battle in NBA Playoff history. In a game that lingers in the minds of NBA fans everywhere (and seemingly can be seen on NBA TV at any given time), Dominique Wilkins and Larry Bird put on a show nonpareil, a can-you-top-this clinic of offensive basketball that captivated all involved spectators -- players and coaches included. This is the story of that afternoon.

"It's a duel. Who's going to blink first?" -- CBS analyst Tommy Heinsohn

Micah gets all the principles to talk about it: Dominique Wilkins and Larry Bird, Doc Rivers, Mike Fratello, Steve Holman, everyone who was a part of it -- yes, including Cliff Levingston -- chimes in to tell the story of the biggest "One That Got Away" in on-court Hawks history.

Be sure to take it all in, if you can stomach re-living the pain for those who were there, and then come on back to discuss.

Awesome work, Micah (and the rest of the contributors listed) -- thank you!