Welcome back as we enter the top 3 of our countdown.
#3: Jeff Teague’s miracle shot
2014 1st Round, Game 3 vs Pacers
As someone who has been watching basketball religiously for the majority of my life, I can still honestly say that this is the most improbable made shot I’ve ever seen.
It came with just under 3 minutes left in a pivotal game 3 in Atlanta. The Hawks had already stunned the basketball world by stealing Game 1 against the top-seeded Pacers, and were now up 6 with 2:54 left in Game 3, looking for a 2-1 series lead.
After a play broke down, Jeff Teague was left stranded at halfcourt with just 3 seconds left on the shot clock. Center Pero Antic arrived and set a screen to get Teague matched up with Indiana forward Luis Scola. Running out of time, Teague drove along the left sideline and was forced to shoot the ball off of one foot without even looking at the basket.
Teague released the ball just as the shot-clock expired. It seemed to hang in the air longer than a normal shot would (or maybe that’s just my imagination) before dropping perfectly through the net. The shot even prompted Teague to give a Jordan-esque shrug of disbelief as he jogged back on defense. The miracle shot gave Atlanta a 9-point lead and was a major factor in their eventual Game 3 win.
Like most things, the shot did not come without its fair share of controversy. The officials elected to review the shot to make sure it beat the shot clock buzzer. While it was released in time, the replay revealed that Teague had stepped out of bounds prior to shooting the ball. However, to the dismay of the Indiana bench, the officials determined that the out-of-bounds aspect of the play was not reviewable and thus the shot was good.
Even though it probably shouldn’t have counted, Jeff certainly gave us a shot for the ages when he hit this improbable three-pointer.