On a day in which Duke escaped near-defeat at the hands of UCF as two game-winners from the Knights rimmed out to keep its March Madness dreams alive, it was in the NBA where the craziest game-winning shot occurred.
The Hornets and Raptors played a wild fourth quarter in which Charlotte blew a 109-99 lead, as Toronto stormed back behind Kawhi Leonard’s effort down the stretch to take a 114-112 lead with mere seconds to play. The Raptors had a chance to ice the game late, but missed a shot with 4.3 seconds to go, allowing the Hornets to call timeout and draw up a hopeful game-winner or game-tying shot.
Toronto used their foul to give on the first inbounds play, so with 3.1 to go Dwayne Bacon, who had a career-high 20 points, passed the ball into Jeremy Lamb. We’ll never know what the play design James Borrego drew up was, because Lamb had it poked away past halfcourt, where he launched a moonshot heave that somehow banked in at the buzzer to give Charlotte the 115-114 win on the road.
After the game Lamb shook his head and said the only way that shot went in was through divine intervention, as Charlotte manages to keep its slim playoff hopes alive at 34-39, two games behind the Heat for the eight spot with under 10 games to go in the season. For Toronto, it’s a back-breaker in their quest for the top seed in the East, and all they can do is shrug because there wasn’t anything else they could do on that final possession defensively to do better.