Washington Wizards veteran Paul Pierce banked in a game-winning buzzer-beating shot on Saturday night to give his team a 2-1 series lead over the Atlanta Hawks.
With star point guard John Wall sidelined, the Wizards nearly allowed a 21-point lead to disappear, but fortunately they had an old head who has come up clutch on so many occasions ensure that they had no regrets.
Pierce received the ball on the last possession in regulation, and like Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls the night before, he broke hearts of the opposition as he banked in a shot to give his team a last-gasp win.
Washington take a 2-1 series lead against the Hawks, and with Wall potentially returning at some point, they will have been delighted to have picked up the victory without him.
Pierce was asked after the game if he had called bank, he replied: “I called game”.
Meanwhile, the Memphis Grizzlies are putting real pressure on the Golden State Warriors after defeating them on Saturday to also take a 2-1 series lead.
After taking home-court advantage away from the No.1 seed in the Western Conference, the Grizzlies will be confident of protecting the ‘Grindhouse’ to cause an upset.
Marc Gasol recorded a double-double of 21 points and 15 rebounds while Zach Randolph added 22 points, and it appears as though they are using their post-season experience to their advantage against the favourites.
Having stormed through the regular season and then dispatched of the New Orleans Pelicans in a series sweep in the first round, the Warriors are now under pressure to turn things around and it is certainly a new experience for coach Steve Kerr to rally his troops and ensure that they hit back in Game 4 to avoid an elimination tie in Game 5 back in Oakland next week.
Atlanta Hawks 101-103 Washington Wizards
Golden State Warriors 89-99 Memphis Grizzlies