NBA

Ranking the 7 Buzzer Beaters From Raptors-Celtics

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In addition to the seven games that it took to finally decide a winner in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, there was also seven exciting shots that beat the end-of-quarter buzzer between the Raptors and Celtics.

Kemba Walker was responsible for three of the seven, completely on brand with his “Cardiac Kemba” nickname.

With a compelling matchup between the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics brewing on the horizon, now is as good a time as any to relive the excitement and give ranking to some of the more wild shots from last series.

7. Kemba adds to Boston’s lead

This shot was meaningless as far as the series or game five went. Boston was ready to head into the locker room at the break with a 25-point lead. Kemba being Kemba took it upon himself to add even more salt into the wound, and drive in the lane for an easy two.

Walker’s layup is one of just two shots on this list that wasn’t a three, and it’s nonchalant vibe in a game that was already over lands it in last place.

6. Walker gets back on track

Walker struggled to shoot the ball in game two, but he came out confident as ever in game three. His 17 points in the first quarter tied his total from the game before, and he capped it all off with this triple.

5. It’s a bird, it’s a plane

Nope. It’s Siakam making one of his four three pointers that he converted all series. He was a letdown for Toronto, after the star player shot just 12.5 percent from beyond the arc. Regardless, this was a clutch time to call upon a bucket to get his team within two points at the break.

4. Back to you, Kemba

The Celtics were rolling in game one, with the first half punctuated by a beautiful give-and-pop by Walker.

With Toronto’s defense looking dazed and confused, Kemba rose up and supplied another three points to Boston’s substantial lead.

3. Tatum’s bread and butter

Tatum cooking in the mid-range is something Boston fans have been accustomed to since his rookie season in 2017. This shot wasn’t technically the dagger in game one, but it may as well have been. You’d be hard pressed to find a game where the Celtics lose with a 15-point lead in the second half and Boston’s young star hitting shots like this.

Something about Tatum falling to the ever-slippery NBA bubble floors and his teammates flocking to support and celebrate with him makes this shot worthy of a top three placement.

2. Second time’s the charm

Game four was a crucial game for Toronto to win. With Boston up 2-1, they did what they needed to do to even up the series and keep hope alive. Fred VanVleet was an integral part of the Raptors’ valiant attempt to take down the Celtics this series, and made five threes in game four.

1. “I don’t shoot trying to miss.”

Putting this game-winner at the top of the list is as easy a decision as one can have to make.

Tacko Fall defending the inbound was rendered useless as Kyle Lowry had plenty of room to back up on the sideline. Jaylen Brown became tunnel-visioned on stopping Marc Gasol rolling to the hoop, and nobody covered the shooter in the corner.

The rest is history.

OG Anunoby nailed one of the biggest shots this postseason, and later claimed he knew it was good the whole time. “I expected to make it. I don’t shoot trying to miss,” he said.

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