Kobe Bryant’s Air Ball Beats Jason Richardson’s Bank Three-Pointer

The pivotal Game Five of the Western Conference Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Phoenix Suns turned out to be a dandy.

It all ended with Kobe Bryant doing his thing, yet again, but with a slight twist. This time, Bryant sealed the victory for the Lakers with a game-winning air-ball in the final seconds of the game.

The shot, uncharacteristic for Kobe, effectively foiled the Suns players long enough for Ron Artest to sneak up and put in the go-ahead bucket, barely beating the buzzer.

All this came just moments after Jason Richardson expertly banked in a laser beam three-pointer from well beyond the arc with 3.5 seconds remaining to tie the game.

If Kobe's shot had hit the rim, there would have been no time for the Lakers to score.

If the ball had gone in, there would have been a second or two for Richardson to give his bank shot another try.

The air ball, it seems, was the way to go.

It was a heartbreaking loss for the Phoenix Suns, who were a mere seconds away from an opportunity to close out the series at the home.

Richardson's shot had capped a dramatic three-quarter-long comeback by the Suns who found themselves in a hole early on. For the Lakers, it was a huge moment of celebration.

It did seem a bit odd, though, to watch as Bryant triumphantly ran into an embrace with Artest.

As Steve Nash summed it up, "It was a crazy game."


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