Nicolas Batum, how do you rate on the Horry Scale?

by Micah Hart

Nicolas Batum‘s tip-in GWBB is the second this season off an inbounds lob, following Andrew Bogut‘s heroics for the Bucks against the Pacers back in December. I continue to marvel at this play’s success — when there is less than a second left, the lob towards the basket seems like something the defense has to account for. The Spurs put Antonio McDyess on the inbounds pass, which does make the lob a little more difficult, but didn’t put anyone near the basket, and they paid for it with the loss.

Of course, the Spurs’ mistake should come as no surprise, as San Antonio did pretty much everything in its power to hand this game to the Blazers down the stretch with a collection of turnovers and mistakes. I’m curious how many players have scored four points in the final second of an NBA game — maybe I can get StatsCube master John Schuhmann to look into it.

Once again, the Horry scale examines a shot  in the categories of difficulty, game situation (was the team tied or behind at the time), importance (playoff game or garden-variety Clippers-Nets game), and celebration, and give it an overall grade on a scale of 1-5 Robert Horrys.

How did Tricky Nic do? Let’s investigate:

Difficulty

This was a very difficult play and a very simple one all at the same time. On the one hand, you only have 0.9 seconds to work with, so the lob has to be right on the money to allow Batum to get the shot off (technically there is enough time allowed to catch and shoot, but practically speaking the tip-in is Batum’s only choice). On the other hand, Batum has at least a six-inch advantage on Tony Parker, so he meets with very little resistance once the lob arrives. I think that’s nitpicking though — Andre Miller is generally recognized as the best lob-tosser in the NBA*, and he puts this one right on the money, making a very difficult play look very easy.

*After the game, Miller would say it was the best pass he’d ever thrown.

Game Situation

Tie ballgame, but with extraordinarily unique circumstances. Think of all that had to go wrong for the Spurs to lose this game. Leading by four with half-a-minute remaining, both of the Spurs’ best ballhandlers (Parker and Manu Ginobili) get their pockets picked, allowing the Blazers to tie the game after a Miller layup and then a pair of Batum free throws with 0.9 left. Then, Steve Novak throws an errant inbounds pass, the third San Antonio turnover in 30 seconds, with no time running off the clock to boot, setting Portland up for a final crack at it. Maybe the game was tied, but it sure didn’t feel like it.

Importance

Not to say that Dallas is a team to be trifled with, but the win keeps the Blazers a half-game ahead of the Hornets for the 6-seed in the West, which keeps them (for the moment) from facing the Lakers in the first round. Portland also remains only 1.5 games behind Denver for the 5-spot, so all in all a very big win.

Celebration

Man – is there a better arena in the NBA for GWBBs? The fans at the Rose Garden always seem right on top of the court, and the crowd goes ballistic as soon as the ball drops through.

Grade

4.5 Horrys. Between the amazing comeback, the perfectly-executed lob, and the outstanding celebration, I have to give this one pretty high marks. I’ll only take off half-a-Horry for the fact that it was a tie game, but otherwise, this one had it all.

What do you think?

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54 Comments

  1. Trinity says:

    I was there!!! Unbelievable finish! The crowd went wild! Down 6 with 1:44 left….2 steals, 3 TO (2 forced), 2 FT and one incredible catch and shoot later…….Trailblazers rock!

    • tata says:

      I don’t see how a non-playoff game can get more than 4 Horrys. You have to save that last Horry for a playoff win. Horry did all his best work in the playoffs and Finals. We wouldn’t even be talking about Horry if all he did was hit game winners in the regular season.

      • NH_HondO says:

        AGREED!! Very nice play but it was a MEANINGLESS regular season game. 2 horrys at most!!

      • Michel says:

        @ tata: i have to disagree wid u. obviously its not a playoff game, but with only about 10 games left in the season and the west as tight as it can get from postiion 5-9, this win over the best in the west really is more than just a game.
        at the end of the season, thx to this win the blazers might have a better position thx to this one win which puts them in a situation to maybe win the first round thx to a better matchup so dat definetly accouts for a big win.
        Really, you have to see the big picture and not just the standing as it is now.

    • SpursDaBest!! says:

      There should have been time for us like .6 but its all good see if you get a win in SAN ANTONIO on Monday.

    • edward says:

      we’ve seent this before in boston and in miami and in orlando its not as amazing as it was the first time….

  2. BLZRS4DAWIN says:

    i was in my friends basement watching we exploded go blazers

  3. Haadi Husain says:

    i voted 2 because noone cared about this game too much

  4. Herr says:

    I would be as thrilled as other Blazer fans, but yet again, all these surprises aren’t surprises anymore. This team is good. This team is elite! Watch out NBA!

  5. angel moreno says:

    THIS game was intense and brutal!!!!!!! and hot!!!!

  6. natsthecat says:

    Haadi Husain…if no one is you, then maybe you are correct. I’d say at LEAST 21K or so people..did care.

  7. Steve says:

    Sweet. As a Lakers fan, this is the best of all worlds – great basketball to watch, taking down the number one Spurs, and keeping the Blaze away for another round. As much as they want to postpone seeing us, we’d rather not see them early on. (We can beat em, but it takes way too much energy for the first round.)

    Not 4.5 Horry’s, though – the race for seeding isn’t even close to as important as any playoff game.

  8. robby macatangay says:

    ok…all in all…i mean..yeah it was intense….but still nothing by far can beat fishers .04 sht….now thats a shot….

  9. Dr.Cox says:

    No one cares about the Fail Blazers, 4 horrys? cmon

  10. blazersunderrated says:

    Ever since the blazers got Gerald Wallace I thought to myself this is going to be an elite team. this year they could surprise alot of people and next year they are going to win at least 50. Wallace i think was one of the most underated trade ive seen. He is an amazing defender good shooter extreamly athletic he can do it all along with roy, camby, aldridge, and now batum oh and mathews playing the way they are this team is long athletic, and a great defensive team. great defenive teams = elite teams. so watch out NBA i see a first round upset. oh and i gave 4 horrys to the batum shot tie game not in the playoffs doesnt come close to game four against sacramento GO LAKERS

  11. SpursDaBest!! says:

    They should of had 0.6 ya he tipped it in but they let they should of left sometime Refs did not realize that i did. Anyways We got them Monday you wont be saying Blazers rock. Its GO SPURS GO!

  12. Kevin Cleary says:

    EPIC!!!

  13. Mike says:

    4.5? Maybe if this were out of 10. This is a disrespect to Robert Horry himself. I think we’ve forgotten why this column was started and why we named it after him. Throwing around high numbers like this leaves nothing for the truly great moments. Let’s not make this another Sprite Dunk Contest.

  14. Darnell says:

    It was tip-in. Nothing fancy about it what he did. The perfect-lob was much more difficult then catching the oop. 3 Horrys for average finish.

  15. Cho Zen WON says:

    1 didn’t even vote on this one.
    COULDN’T.

    This is Robert Horry, 7 time NBA Champion Robert Horry!!!

    Shame on NBA.com for even comparing the two!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Horry’s shots were actually clutch because there was actually something real on the line.

    Battun’s name shouldn’t even be in the same sentence as Horry’s!!!!!!!!!!

    This is another example of NBA observers getting dumber and dumber.

    • Justinian says:

      You got exactly one point right, NBA observers are getting dumber & dumber. And YOU are right at the top of the list.

      You are missing the entire point of this whole rating scale thing. This is a consolidated location where all of the exciting ends to games can be posted to display one of the most exciting elements of basketball. The fact that this is a “Horry Scale” unto itself acknowledges that Horry WAS the best, NOT that granting a certain number of Horrys means any particular player is that much better than Horry. Get a clue.

      ChoZenWon? I think not. Try ChoZenLost.

  16. ChuckD says:

    You forgot to mention that this all was against the so called best team in the league. this is what gives this game the overall score! i love to see the blazers show SA whats up. its a nice feeling to know your team has beat mostly every top team in the league except for the Laker’s this season. San Antonio, Miami, Orlando, Boston, Dallas. We have Good chances with anyone as long as we keep our heads straight and come in and play our game.

  17. whitefeather21380 says:

    i voted 2 because noone cared about this game too much= I voted 2 because I am a lowlife jerk.-Haadi Husain

    This play was a awesome play, and if your not a Blazers fan or Spurs fan for that matter, then wont care to much, But this play is about a well excecuted play off a timeout. If it would have been done by a Laker-Celtic-Maverics..whatever..it would have been awesome too.

  18. Ed Baker says:

    Batum once again proved what I have been saying for two years – he is already better than Pippen in his prime. Batum is a 1st ballot HOFer.

    If a player were to average over 48 minutes (a North American NBA Men’s regulation game is 48 minutes) – what Batum scored in the final 0.9 seconds – that would be 12,800 points per game. That would easily be the most in the NBA and would guarantee him MVP status.

    Ed Baker
    MrEdBaker – Twitter

    • Rob Sargent says:

      if you find a game where points have been scored every 0.9 seconds, i will pay you A LOT of money.
      Comon, be realistic, what did you say about T-Mac’s 13 points in 37 seconds? (might not have got those stats exact, it was from the top of my head…!)
      Jesus Christ, you really are dence.

  19. Markk (spurs Fan) says:

    What doesnt kill only makes you Stronger,Spurs Will Only grow from this.Plus regular season aint nothing.I Can wait till Mavs Dismantle those overconfident Blazers.

  20. Jared says:

    Do they really have to call the game winners an “Horry?” They should call it like the “Birds” or something better than “Horry.” Seriously, rate someone on the “Horry Scale” on how bad they flopped!!!

    • Lawrence says:

      Flopping is forever called Bosh’s after the acting he did after being hit by a phantom elbow from Boozer.

  21. LakersWillWin says:

    This was a pretty a good buzzer beater.

  22. gary says:

    don’t forget two free throws to tie it with.9 seconds…tw freethrows and the basket= 6

  23. ephraim says:

    the team that will face portland in first round will be upset…so, teams must better watch!…go blazers….

  24. Jeremy N says:

    I can obviously tell that all the people who said that it didn’t deserve a rating of atleast 4 are obviously sad San Antonio fans. I am a Blazer fan and even if i wasnt i would have to say that was a spectacular play and if you don’t agree just watch the replay.

  25. Kratos says:

    gary
    March 26, 2011 at 5:04 pm
    don’t forget two free throws to tie it with.9 seconds…tw freethrows and the basket= 6

    Uh…two free throws and a basket is FOUR points.

    • Rob Sargent says:

      He was giving it a rating, in his opinion (i disagree, it was good, but you can’t compared it to great moments… like MJ’s “THE shot”… rather than counting the number of points he scored.

  26. bros says:

    doesnt deserve anywhere close to that rating. it took a huge meltdown by the spurs and the refs handing portland the game (didnt know taking four steps with no dribble wasnt a travel) for this to even happen.

  27. Todd Abraham says:

    WOW..I was in the nose bleeds when Billy Ray Bates’ lob defeated the Sixers by one many years ago…But I was on the FLOOR two feet from Miller for this one!! Has my vote for the best finish in HISTORY for this franchise. Got it on my Iphone4, Take a look at the guy on floor just o right on Andre Miller, in the gray long sleeve, jumping first! thats me! WHAT A NIGHT. OH yeah, Batum fell on me earlier an the game, must have been an OMEN.

  28. Joe says:

    I think it deserves 5 because it was the Spurs and I hate the Spurs

  29. caesar mendoza says:

    good thing the spurs have been through this b4 wen the lakers and fish upsetted them with .4 secs on a play off game

  30. zachary nicol says:

    That was sick not to mention that it was over fellow Frenchmen Tony Parker, spurs you don’t want to see us in the playoffs.
    RIP CITY!!!

  31. Kevin says:

    Hey what about the Jameer Nelson shot?

  32. Daniel says:

    WHAT ABOUT JAMEER NELSON’S BUZZER BEATER??!!!????

  33. Daniel says:

    NEVERMIND

  34. sup says:

    hey spurs rock fan what happened your spurs lost

  35. LAKERS-3-PEAT says:

    i rate 2.5

  36. don johnson says:

    Did you not see the Blazers beat the tar out of LA the other night? Portland is for real!!! Crash is the man! and Aldridge, Matthews, Batum, Rudy…all money! to have a core group surrounded on the outskirts by B Roy, Camby, and oh…the best lob thrower in the league….it doesn’t get much better…Imagine if Oden were playing too!

  37. don johnson says:

    @SpursDaBest!!—-we beat your a#@ again! AGAIN!!!! HAHAHAHAHA AGAIN!!!!! Spurs will not win a Championship this year. Sorry lil buddy.

  38. corey says:

    please , please, please people stop trying to take away any of the credit or respect the trailblazers deserve for any incredible feats they achieve in the face of much adversity (there have been many). just because they have a smaller fan base than most teams is by far made up for by the intensity of those that are true fans( no one can deny this fact resonably). Blazer nation rip city beat l.a.!!!! horaaahhh here we come

  39. corey says:

    …. and a teams reputation is determined by how they perform on the court… no excuses for their loss they made stupid turnovers and mistakes and the blazers capatalized on them. thus p-town is undoubtably the better team. Pleasereference the outcome of the season series between these two teams if u still have ur doubts. blazers better than the the team with the best record. final