Wednesday , Apr , 23 , 2008 Oly Sandor

Great Playoff Moments, Day 5: Big-Shot Bob Saves Kobe, Shaq, & L.A. Lakers, Kills Sacramento Kings

I used to think Robert Horry was a magician. During the regular season, he disappeared, preferring the bench or injured list to meaningless minutes against Minnesota in February. The playoffs were different. No more milk carton. Come mid-April, the forward would reappear, killing opponents’ championship dreams with clutch shots …

Great Playoff Moments, Day 5: Big-Shot Bob Saves Kobe, Shaq, & L.A. Lakers, Kills Sacramento KingsI used to think Robert Horry was a magician. During the regular season, he disappeared, preferring the bench or injured list to meaningless minutes against Minnesota in February.

The playoffs were different. No more milk carton. Come mid-April, the forward would reappear, killing opponents’ championship dreams with clutch shots.

I’m using past tense even though Horry hasn’t retired. He still plays for San Antonio. Sometime during the next two months, he’ll help the Spurs.

To understand big-shot-Bob’s legacy, you have to see one play. That’s all. The background is simple: Sacramento was leading L.A. 2-1, Western Conference Finals. The Kings were also leading game four 99-97 with few ticks on the clock and, possibly, the Lakers’ season.

Or so we thought. The purple-and-gold had final possession. Kobe Bryant received the ball top-of-the-key; playing for the tie, he missed a tough drive left. Shaquille O’Neal couldn’t convert an easy put-back.

The Kings, in desperation, batted the ball to the top of the three-point arch. Waiting patiently was Horry. He gathered possession, calmly stroked the game-winning three, back-pedalling as time expired.

The Lakers won 100-99. The series may have been tied 2-2, but it was over. Three weeks later, L.A. won another NBA Title, while Sacramento has never recovered.

What do you think of Horry’s heorics. Did his shot kill the Kings? Get at us in the comment box below and return to HoopsVibe the Blog tommorrow for another great playoff moment. Image courtesy of  Cydeout.

Want more great playoff moments? Check out:

Great Playoff Moments, Day 1: Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe Bryant, and the L.A. Lakers Escape The ’Jail Blazers’ ’

-Great Playoff Moments, Day 2: Did Michael Jordan Foul or Receive A Superstar No Call Against Bryon Russell?

-Great Playoff Moments, Day 3: Vince Carter Didn’t "Always Try", So Toronto Says "VC Sucks"

-Great Playoff Moments, Day 4: Michael Jordan and Chicago Learn About Chicago’s Heart Like John Starks.