The 10 Best Playoff Buzzer Beaters in NBA History
Last night, Ron Artest's buzzer beater boosted the Los Angeles Lakers to a 3-2 series lead in the Western Conference Finals.
Artest's game-winner is just another in a long line of memorable, buzzer-beating shots that have shaped the history and storylines of the NBA playoffs.
While Artest's buzzer-beater may not rank up there with the best in the history of the NBA playoffs, it did get us thinking about the best and most legendary game-winning shots that have won games, propelled teams and even won NBA championships.
Here is a look at the 10 best buzzer beaters in NBA postseason history.
10. Alonzo Mourning - 1993 Eastern Conference First Round Game 4
The Hornets, leading the five-game series two games to one over the Boston Celtics, trailed 103-102 with 3.3 seconds remaining.
The ball went into the Hornets big man, who stepped back and drained a jumper from the top of the key to send Charlotte to the semifinals.
9. Ralph Sampson - 1986 Western Conference Finals Game 5
With one shot, Ralph Sampson and the Houston Rockets got the best of the Showtime Lakers.
Sampson's twirling jumper knocked out Los Angeles and sent Houston to the 1986 NBA Finals.
8. John Stockton - 1997 Western Conference Finals Game 6
The Jazz led the Rockets three games to one and wanted to avoid going back home for Game Seven.
John Stockton ensured the Jazz their first trip to the NBA Finals when he sank this 25-footer for the 103-100 victory.
7. Kobe Bryant - 2006 Western Conference First Round Game 4
The Lakers eventually lost the series in seven games, but Kobe's legacy as the ultimate game-winner happened this night when he hit the shot to send the game to overtime, and the eventual game winner.
His shot in overtime gave the Lakers a 3-1 series lead.
6. LeBron James - 2009 Eastern Conference Finals Game 2
It remains the biggest shot in LeBron James' career to date.
With his team trailing in the series 1-0 and in desperate need of a win before going to Orlando, James had one second to drop this bomb.
5. Gar Heard - 1976 NBA Finals Game 5
Before Heard's shot, the Celtics' John Havlicek hit a banking, running lay up that sent the Boston Garden into bedlam.
However, Heard responded with a 20-footer to tie the game and send it to triple-overtime in one of the best playoff games in NBA history.
4. Derek Fisher - 2004 Western Conference Semifinals Game 5
Derek Fisher responded to Tim Duncan's acrobatic shot by draining one of the best buzzer beaters of the last decade.
With 0.4 seconds remaining, Fisher perfected the catch-and-shoot to give the Lakers a 3-2 series lead.
3. Robert Horry - 2002 Western Conference Finals Game 4
The Lakers worked their way back from a 20-point deficit in Game Four against the Sacramento Kings.
Had "Big Shot Bob" not sank this 3-pointer with less than one second left, the Kings would have taken a commanding 3-1 series lead.
Instead, Horry tied the series 2-2 and propelled the Lakers to a series win in seven games.
2. Vinnie Johnson - 1990 NBA Finals Game 5
The Pistons led the Portland Trail Blazers 3-1 in the 1990 NBA Finals.
The Pistons got the ball with 20.1 seconds remaining, but it was Johnson's shot with less than one second remaining gave the Pistons their second straight title.
1. Michael Jordan - 1989 Eastern Conference First Round Game 5
It is the most famous buzzer beater in NBA history. With the best-of-five series tied 2-2 and the Cavaliers leading 100-99, Michael Jordan stopped, pop, hung...and hung...and hung until he drained the jumper to give the Bulls the win.
Cavs fans are still reeling from this shot.