The shot Derrick Rose made to beat the Game 3 buzzer — a long three-pointer launched over the outstretched arm of Cleveland’s Tristan Thompson that banked home just before time expired — was many things.
One of them, Thompson says, was lucky.
As the Cavaliers attempted to come to grips with what had just occurred on the floor of the United Center to send them to a 2-1 deficit in the series, they were content with the way that final play was defended — mainly due to the nature of Rose’s shot.
“I contested,” Thompson told Northeast Ohio Media Group late Friday night. “It wasn’t like he just walked in and took a three. That’s all you can really ask for. It was a lucky shot. He hit it off the glass. It’s tough.”
LeBron James and J.R. Smith essentially echoed the sentiment.
When Thompson finally got dressed and exited the corner conversation to speak to the media that had huddled in front of him, James and Smith studied him when he was asked about Rose’s last-second heave.
“It’s just a tough-ass shot,” James said to Smith before Thompson began his answer. “Shoot it again, he misses,” Smith replied.
This isn’t trash talk by the Cavaliers, and it isn’t in any way meant to discount Rose’s effort.
When you lose a game on a shot like that, you look for reasons why. And since there aren’t any that are logical, it’s easier just to chalk it up to your opponent simply being more fortunate.