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Video: Kobe Bryant should not be that open on game winner

Apr 4, 2012, 7:59 AM EDT

Even Kobe Bryant‘s most ardent supporters have to admit he has put up some terrible shots at the end of games, highly contested fade-away threes. But this time he is the best option on the play and gets a shockingly open look.

To set the stage: The Lakers are up one (because of an earlier Kobe bucket) and there are 11 seconds left in the game but just 2 seconds left on the shot clock. Traditionally in this situation the priorities are: 1) do not allow the easy inbound pass under the basket for a layup; 2) stick with Kobe.

The Nets forgot the second part of that. After the game Kobe was asked how he got that wide open and he jokingly said “because Pau (Gasol) finally set a good screen.” Gerald Wallace does get picked off by a Gasol screen but with two seconds left to shoot you switch everything and Kris Humphries doesn’t, he stays with Gasol, too. By the time Wallace gets free Kobe has popped out, gotten the ball and gotten a good look at a three. It’s a good shot.

But it rattles around a lot. That is a shooter’s roll.

  1. omniusprime - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:51 AM

    The only thing missing from Kobe’s great game winner last night was Chick Hearn’s trademark line “The game is in the refrigerator, the door is closed, the light is out, the butters getting hard, the eggs are cooling and the jello is jiggling!”! The Lakers fooled around last night letting the Nets hang around so long, should have been more of a blowout.

  2. cakemixa - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    Looks like a lucky bounce/roll to me.

    • mightyquinn69 - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:13 AM

      After being in the League for 16 years. Luck has nothing to do with it.

    • Kyle Davidson - Apr 4, 2012 at 12:49 PM

      Look at the last replay. The ball is halfway down before it hits the rim. It would’ve been UNLUCKY if it didn’t go down.

  3. blueintown - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:17 AM

    Is it really a game winner if they already have the lead?

    • Kyle Davidson - Apr 4, 2012 at 12:52 PM

      Technically, you’re right, in which case Kobe hit the game winner on the previous shot. But had he missed this one, the Nets get the ball with 6.8 left only down one. Totally changes the situation…and it probably would’ve ended poorly for the Lakers.

    • eureca323 - Apr 4, 2012 at 3:07 PM

      True. Technically Kobe hit the game winner about a minute earlier when it was tied 86-86 then he hit a tough long contested 2 to put them up 88-86 which ended up being the game winner. The 3 put it away.

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