No...not the Bulls preseason pledge, I'm talking naturally about Derek Fisher's game-winning shot last night. First of all, I know that NBA rules say you can catch-and-shoot in 3 tenths of a second, and rules are rules. Did they have a big study to find this out to be true? Just thinking logistically it doesn't seem very possible. But in the scope of NBA rules, the shot was legit.
But just how big was this shot? Not even just in the context of one series and one season, but the collective legacy of the Lakers franchise and its current group of players.
What if Fisher's shot didn't come out of his hand in time? or sailed long....
- Do the Spurs close them out in game 6?
- Does Gary Payton leave as a free agent?
- Does Payton never have another shot at an NBA title?
- Same for Karl Malone?
- Does Kobe leave finally fill his desire to lead his own team? The Clippers? The Suns? The California Penal League?
- Or maybe Phil leaves too? and Shaq says (like a certain someone) that he'd never play for another coach? (unless of course...he does)?
- Is it the end of the Lakers dynasty?
That's a lot of ifs, but does this worst-case scenario change forever on one Derek Fisher heave? Its doubtful, and in fact there's still a chance Fisher's shot is annulled if the Spurs can just win 2 games in a row. Then the Lakers season would be officially history. The rest? well that may just take care of itself.
UPDATE: Scott at NBAWeblog.com gives some insights into what the Lakers should be worried about in game 6.