“In situations like that, I’ve got to get the last shot.”
Except if you watch the video of the play (above) the look Miles got was way better than any George would have been able to create. So after looking at the tape, does George feel differently? Here is what he said, via Steve Aschburner of NBA.com.
“A lot of me, of course, being the leader of this team wants the last shot. And wants the game to be decided by me,” George said. “But at the same time, I’ve got to have trust for my teammates. C.J. has been in that position in this season where I needed him to make a big shot. And I’ve kicked it to him and he’s made the big shot.
“I thought he had a good look. A very makeable shot for C.J. But I was selfish in the moment. I wanted that shot in that moment.”
He should want that shot, but he’s also got to know if the defense takes dramatic steps to take him out of the play, he’s got to trust teammates. The way Michael Jordan trusted Steve Kerr, or Kobe Bryant Derek Fisher.
LeBron James raced out ridiculously high to trap George, and with that pass to Miles the Pacers had a 4-3 below the arc.George slid over toward the ball and called for it, but LeBron went with him meaning any pass back would have been forced, and at best resulted in a long, contested shot over LeBron. Miles got a better look. You live with that.
The real question heading into Game 2 is how much that game scared the Cavaliers, and will it lead to better focus, sharper rotations from them on defense? If so, the Pacers are in trouble, but after a couple of months of lackluster defense nobody is betting on the Cavs to flip the switch on that end.