The 1987–88 NBA season was the 42nd season of the National Basketball Association. The season ended with the Los Angeles Lakers winning their second straight Championship, beating the Detroit Pistons in seven hard-fought games in the NBA Finals, becoming the NBA's first repeat champions since the Boston Celtics did it in the 1968–69 NBA season.
* Michael Jordan becomes the only player in NBA history to win both the scoring title and Defensive Player of the Year honors. He is also the only player in NBA history to combine these awards with the season's Most Valuable Player award.
* James Worthy records the first ever Game Seven triple double as he records 36 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists.
* The league awards expansion franchises to Charlotte, Miami, Minneapolis, and Orlando. The Charlotte and Miami franchises would debut in the 1988–89 NBA season, while Minneapolis and Orlando would begin play in the 1989–90 NBA season.
* The New Jersey Nets had 3 different head coaches during the season, a rare occurrence. The Indiana Pacers had four different head coaches during the following season.
* The San Antonio Spurs are the last team in NBA history to lose 50 or more games in a season, and still make the playoffs.
* With the exception of a first round sweep of San Antonio, the Los Angeles Lakers played seven-game series the rest of the way. During the run, they overcame the Utah Jazz in the semifinals, the Dallas Mavericks in the conference finals, and the Detroit Pistons in the NBA Finals. The Mavs' appearance in the conference finals was the team's first of four appearances.
* On January 5, 1988, Hall of Famer Pete Maravich died of a heart attack during a pickup game. He was 40 years old. The Utah Jazz subsequently honored him by sporting a patch containing his jersey No. 7.
* The Phoenix Suns mourned the loss of center Nick Vanos, killed in an airline crash on August 16, 1987. The Suns sported black circular patches with his jersey No. 30 on their uniforms for the season.
* The Detroit Pistons play their final season at Pontiac Silverdome.
* The Milwaukee Bucks play their final season at MECCA (Milwaukee Arena).
* The Sacramento Kings play their final season at ARCO Arena I.
* The Washington Bullets played the 1987–88 season with two players on opposite sides of the NBA height record: 7'7" Manute Bol, then the league's tallest player (tied with another former Bullet, Gheorghe Mureșan) and 5'3" Muggsy Bogues, the league's shortest player.