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Top NBA Finals moments: Garfield Heard's shot forces triple OT in 1976

In Game 5 of the 1976 Finals, Garfield Heard's wild shot forced the first triple overtime in Finals history.

From NBA.com Staff

In the 1976 Finals, Garfield Heard provided heroics to force the first triple-overtime in Finals history.


The Game: 1976 Finals, Game 5

The Series Situation: Phoenix Suns and Boston Celtics tied, 2-2

The Play: With one second left, Garfield Heard catches Curtis Perry’s inbounds pass, turns and hits a 20-foot jumper from the top of the key as the horn sounds to force the first triple-overtime in Finals history.

The Significance: It has long been regarded as the greatest game in Finals history for all that happened, especially at the end of the second overtime. Perry gave the Suns a 110-109 lead with four seconds left, but John Havlicek raced the length of the floor to drop in a 15-foot banker that touched off a celebration at Boston Garden. Fans stormed the floor. Referee Richie Powers was attacked on the court by a fan.

When order was restored, one second was put back on the clock. The Suns had no timeouts, but Paul Westphal intentionally called a timeout Phoenix did not have. It gave Boston a free throw, which was converted for a two-point lead, but also gave the Suns an opportunity to advance the ball to mid-court and set up the Perry-to-Heard play. While the Suns got to celebrate then, the Celtics eventually won the game 128-126 and then closed out the series in Game 6 to wrap up their 13th championship.

From NBA.com Staff

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