Horry Scale: Terry Rozier's winner caps wild final minute
Terry Rozier drills the wing jumper as time expires after Draymond Green's two late technical fouls gave the Hornets life.
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.
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The Warriors took a major curve ball just minutes before tipoff Saturday in Charlotte with the late scratch of team leader Stephen Curry. But even without his team-high 29.9 points per game, the Warriors still found themselves clinging to a two-point lead in the final seconds. Then … bedlam.
GAME SITUATION: LaMelo Ball and Brad Wanamaker contested a jump ball at center court with 13.3 seconds left. Draymond Green and Gordon Hayward fell to the court as they battled for the ensuing loose ball, with the Hornets granted time out despite possession being questionable. This infuriated Green, whose meltdown earned a pair of technical fouls and a mandatory ejection.
Draymond just got ejected after double tech 😳 pic.twitter.com/igUr1XQd0J
— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) February 21, 2021
Terry Rozier made both free throws to tie the game at 100 apiece with 9.3 seconds left, setting the stage for his fading, falling-out-of-bounds 20-footer from the left wing, which launched just over Juan Toscano-Anderson’s outstretched hand.
DIFFICULTY: Pretty, pretty high. Rozier is lighting it up from 3-point range this season, with his percentage ticking up to a sizzling 46.0 after drilling 8-for-11 against the Warriors. But the midrange has been his Achilles heel at just 30.4% on long 2s, the second-lowest showing of his career. Making matters even more tenuous, Rozier had made a grand total of just one shot from that general area on the left side all season. All of which is to say it was anything but his sweet spot, even under optimal, non-crucial circumstances. But you couldn’t tell from the end result, as Rozier rose up and sank the shot with confidence.
CELEBRATION: The usual swarm-the-guy-who-made-the-shot stuff. Perhaps more notable was the reaction of Warriors coach Steve Kerr, who tried to boot the ball into the stands. In perhaps yet another sign that it just wasn’t meant to be for the Warriors, he appeared to pull back at the last second and squibbed the ball instead. As for Rozier, his winner capped a 36-point night for the sixth-year guard, including 20 in the fourth quarter and 10 over the final 1:18.