MANILA, Philippines -- HBO has renewed "Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty" for a second season, just in time for the airing of the first season's finale.
The buzzer sounded on the HBO Original sports drama series on Monday morning, but fans can watch a same-day encore at 10 p.m. on HBO.
"Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty" follows one of sports' most dominant dynasties that defined an era of basketball. Following the purchase of the Los Angeles Lakers by Dr. Jerry Buss in 1979, the team went on to win five championships between 1980 and 1991.
They did so while showcasing their style both on and off the court. True to the Hollywood nature of their homecourt, the Lakers unleashed a style of basketball on a league unprepared for their speed and ferocity – perfectly encapsulated in one word: Showtime.
Here's how "Winning Time: The Rise of The Lakers Dynasty" captured the magic of Showtime and introduced an important period of basketball history to a new generation of fans:
The Lakers had the first overall pick in the 1979 NBA Draft, and the team selected Earvin "Magic" Johnson, a 6-foot-9 point guard with a big smile and an even bigger drive to win games. After a storied career, Johnson would go on to be one of the best players to ever step foot on a basketball court.
Played by Quincy Isaiah on the show, "Winning Time: The Rise of The Lakers Dynasty" follows Johnson just as his career takes off, shortly before he became the star who helped define the Lakers' exciting brand of basketball.
The show also brought viewers along to experience the exciting atmosphere of the Lakers' home games at the iconic Los Angeles Forum.
Dr. Jerry Buss (John C. Reilly) took inspiration from the opening act of The Horn nightclub and brought the glitz and glamor of Hollywood to Lakers games at The Forum – the team's home arena. Pairing a theatrical atmosphere, music, and dancers with the Lakers' new and exciting style of play made Lakers' games the place to be for fans and celebrities alike.
During the Showtime era, the Lakers played an up-tempo style of basketball that relied on fast breaks and Magic Johnson's creative passing to generate offense.
Episode four of the series offers viewers an in-depth look at the beginnings of Showtime basketball. In a practice session, coach Jack McKinney (Tracy Letts) convinces the Lakers to adapt his offensive scheme of running fast breaks.
Expertly filmed to bring viewers close to the action, this practice scene is important in Lakers lore, as it marked the beginning of the transition from fundamental-heavy basketball to the Showtime Lakers style that continues to influence the modern game.
Aside from Magic Johnson and the fast break, the Lakers enjoyed the luxury of having Kareem-Abdul Jabbar on the team. Played by Solomon Hughes in the series, the 7-foot-2 center would go on to finish his career with the most points scored in NBA history.
A key move in his offensive arsenal was the Sky Hook – a sweeping shot released from the side of the body that maximized Abdul-Jabbar's long reach and tall height. In preparation for the role, Hughes spent hours trying to replicate the shot, utilizing his background as an academic researcher to analyze footage, break down the nuances, and to practice it.
Notoriously difficult to block when done right, Abdul-Jabbar's Sky Hook was a big part of the Showtime Lakers' success.
"Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty" is based on the book "Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s" written by Jeff Pearlman.
Catch up on "Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty" on HBO GO. Subscribe to HBO GO online at www.hbogoasia.ph or the mobile app via the App Store or Play Store on your device for as low as ₱99.70/month. Or access HBO GO via Cignal, Globe and Skycable. HBO GO is also available on Android TV, Apple TV, LG TV and Samsung Smart TV – and comes with AirPlay and Google Cast functionality.