Horry Scale

Horry Scale: Dort's dagger 3 beats buzzer to rattle Spurs

Thunder forward Luguentz Dort nailed an open 3 at the buzzer to sink the Spurs.

Ben Couch, NBA.com

Luguentz Dort rattles Spurs with buzzer-beating dagger

A reminder on The Horry Scale: It breaks down a game-winning buzzer-beater (GWBB) in the categories of difficulty, game situation (was the team tied or behind at the time?), importance (playoff game or garden-variety night in November?) and celebration. Then we give it an overall grade on a scale of 1-5 Robert Horrys, named for the patron saint of last-second answered prayers.

The game featured 13 lead changes and 7 ties, so what was one more at the buzzer?

After a back-and-forth four quarters on Wednesday left the Thunder and Spurs tied at 99 in the final minute, a missed shot and a crushing, self-inflicted turnover set up Oklahoma City on the frontcourt sideline just 3.9 seconds from the finish. Inbounds, assist, open triple. All she wrote.

GAME SITUATION: The Spurs, who last led 88-87 with 6:16 to play, threatened several times from that point to retake control, ultimately tying the game at 99 on a finger roll from Lonnie Walker IV. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who had had shot 13-for-19 while scoring a career-high 42, then bricked a pullup 3. The Spurs rebounded and called for time, inbounding with 10.7 seconds left. Patty Mills, looking for an opening on the right wing, clamped his dribble with both hands while changing direction. The double-dribble call and a timeout left the Thunder a final shot in regulation.

DIFFICULTY: After crossing screens sent shooters to the corners, Al Horford — posted at the nail — came toward the ball. Driving right off the catch from Gilgeous-Alexander, Horford took two dribbles to draw help defender Patty Mills.  Dort, 5-for-11 from the field and 3-for-7 from 3 to that point, had all the time on the clock to line up and fire away, not a man between him and the rim.

CELEBRATION: Dort watched the shot fall, then dropped to the floor, arms spread and smiling wide. Across the court, his teammates were already rushing off the bench as the ball swished through. Pileup party time for OKC.

GRADE: Regular season, second chance, gifted opportunity. Wiiiiiiide open. Might as well have been shooting alone on the playground. Solid, if unspectacular. Three Horrys

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