Posted April 23, 2013

Watch: Alternate angle showcases the astounding difficulty of Chris Paul game-winner

2013 NBA playoffs, Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers, Rob Mahoney

Creating and scoring against the Grizzlies’ set defense is a feat in itself. But to do so with the game on the line — with Memphis’ lineup optimized and defenders at their most tenacious — must register as one of the taller orders in the league. With the score tied in the closing seconds of Game 2 on Tuesday, the Clippers’ Chris Paul was charged with doing just that.

By this point, we all know the result. Paul chiseled out the slightest bit of room for a tough drive toward the right side of the floor, picked up his dribble with a little more than a second remaining and made a runner off the glass to give the Clippers a 93-91 victory and a 2-0 series lead. But the above clip does a fantastic job of illustrating the impossibility of that shot.

JENKINS: Paul delivers for Clippers

By the time Paul actually releases the ball, he’s sandwiched between the outstretched arms of Tony Allen — who has shaded him step-for-step — and Darrell Arthur, a placement that would seem to swallow up any angle that Paul might have otherwise created. He somehow maintains his balance, weaves into an open trajectory and lets his floater rip with some slight contact on his shooting wrist. That’s not merely a clutch shot, but a patently absurd one.

7 comments
ShaLiq
ShaLiq

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Michael22
Michael22

two tough losses for memphis, as they probably played well enough to win one game but Chris Paul was just good enough to get that shot off. Freeze frame it on the release, and there is about a two-inch space between the defenders and Paul's hand to squeeze the shot through.

The real shame is that this matchup is a first round face-off in the West and one team has to go home. All I can think is that the Clippers and Grizzlies are both significantly better than the East's #2 Seed Knicks, and only one of OKC, SA, DEN, LAC, and MEM (the #2 to #6 best teams in the NBA) will get to face Miami. If playing tougher opposition improves a team, the West champ will face far better teams and should push Miami to 6 or 7 games. Otherwise a fresh Miami team will run the weak East and will have to play five to ten fewer games to get there, and might make it a complete rout in the Finals vs a worn down foe.

MinhNguyen
MinhNguyen

How about the push off at the 17-19 second mark. Stiff arming is NOT legal.

nnm
nnm

the slow-motion view makes me wonder.... do they ever call "palming" anymore? it was an amazing shot, but the dribble is suspect.

wasabimanbot
wasabimanbot

@nnm It's a slo-mo vid which exaggerates every single move. Watch Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose if you want to see egregious palming violations.

tcam1213
tcam1213

Was a great shot...but has it gotten to the point that the NBA wants offense so the refs just ignore the very obvious palming/carrying of nearly all ball handlers?  Paul is fantastic, but he can't get that shot off unless he carries the ball multiple times.  Just re-write the rules then if they aren't going to be enforced.