Three consecutive victories by the New Orleans Pelicans over the San Antonio Spurs? Yeah, that didn’t sound right to the basketball gods, either. In the defining play of an ugly but hotly contested 95-93 Spurs win, watch Omer Asik misdirect the ball in his own basket to force overtime as the fourth quarter clock expires.
Duncan was officially credited with the basket, but the video tells a far different story. It’s clear that Asik’s is the only hand to touch the ball as it spins toward the basket and eventually snakes its way through the rim.What a tough, tough break for the Pelicans. Doing almost everything right sometimes isn’t enough in the NBA; this is a prime example.
After the game, New Orleans coach Monty Williams confirmed that reality. From The Times-Picayune:
“I have no complaints about anything. The edge was there, we competed. It wasn’t about rebounding or any missed assignments tonight. It just didn’t go our way.”
Duncan admitted things simply fell his team’s way, too:
“I don’t know what that was, I can’t explain that one, but I’ll take it. That was more luck than anything in the world, so I’ll take that with me. We deserve one.”
Anthony Davis paced the Pelicans with 21 points, 12 rebounds, and four steals on 8-of-12 shooting. It seemed he had the game won with .7 seconds left in regulation after this put-back slam that put his team up 84-82:
But Asik’s gaffe extended the game, allowing Manu Ginobili to play hero in the extra session. The Argentinian legend scored seven points of his game-high 27 points over the game’s final five minutes, including the go-ahead layup with 24 seconds remaining off a crafty cut and feed from Duncan.
San Antonio moved to 20-14 with the win, while New Orleans fell to 16-16 – one game behind the Phoenix Suns for eighth-place in the West as the Oklahoma City Thunder loom.
(Streamable via Martinsek)
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