In a showdown of "can-you-top-this?” shots, Carmelo Anthony had the final answer over Kevin Durant on Friday night at the Ford Center.
Just when it appeared Durant’s 3-pointer with 2.7 seconds left would give the Thunder a dramatic win, Anthony drained a 3-pointer with 0.1 remaining to lift Denver to a 122-120 win in front of 18,613 stunned fans.
"It was a heck of a game,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. "Nobody deserved to lose the game. It should have gone to overtime after overtime after overtime. Carmelo hit a great, tough, contested shot.”
On the final play, Desmond Mason covered Anthony, who nailed a 24-footer in front of the Thunder bench.
"The only thing I could have done differently was to deny him the basketball,” Mason said. "But I wouldn’t want to give up a back door (shot) or quick layup. I pushed him out to the 3-point line, and he made a tough shot.”
It was the third time this season a Thunder opponent has won on a last-second shot.
"You’re on such a high and then you go to such a low in just two seconds,” said Thunder guard Earl Watson. "The crowd was so loud you could hardly hear anyone talk. When ’Melo hit that shot, everyone was stunned. Silence.
"It’s a tough, tough loss. Losing hurts. I don’t care how you lose or how many times you lose, the feeling is the same. It’s always tough, especially when you lose like that.”