Everything worked perfectly for the San Antonio Spurs, who defeated the Cavaliers, 100-98, on Thursday night in Cleveland on a basket by Sean Elliott at the buzzer.
Part of the reason is that everything was working miserably for the Cavaliers.
After a timeout, the Spurs’ Doc Rivers inbounded the ball from half-court, finding Elliott, who had stepped away from Cleveland’s Chris Mills.
Elliott then took Rivers’ pass and banked in the winning basket.
“Doc had the patience to hold the ball and not throw it in right away,” Elliott said. “It was a nice, full second. You know, if you have 0.5 seconds, you have to tip it. But with a full second, you can turn and shoot.”
Mills was more stunned than anyone when Rivers’ pass flew past.
“We had decided to take the delay of game right away,” Mills said. “So as soon as the official handed the ball to Doc, we were going to step out of bounds and get a feel of what they were going to do. . . . We never got around to it. It was just a mental lapse by the team.”
The Spurs won for the ninth time in the last 10 games overall and for the ninth consecutive time in games decided by three points or fewer. Cleveland has lost five of its last six games.
Portland 99, Miami 90--Otis Thorpe had his highest point total as a Trail Blazer, getting 22 points in a victory at Miami.
Charlotte 112, Seattle 99--Alonzo Mourning scored 35 points and Dell Curry connected on three key three-point baskets in the final four minutes to lead the Hornets in a victory at Charlotte.
Indiana 109, Sacramento 94--Reggie Miller scored 30 points and had six three-point baskets for the Pacers, who won their sixth in a row, in Sacramento.