Thursday, April 16, 2009

NCAA Tournament, NBA Style - Finals

Starting Five


G- Mike Bibby
G-Gilbert Arenas
G-Jason Terry
F-Andre Iguodala
C-Channing Frye


G- Ben Gordon
G- Ray Allen
F- Rudy Gay
F- Caron Butler
C- Emeka Okafor

Richard Jefferson, Luke Walton, Jerryd Bayless, Hassan Adams

Richard Hamilton, Charlie Villanueva, Josh Boone, Hilton Armstrong, Jake Voskuhl, Kevin Ollie, Donyell Marshall, Kevin Ollie

Game Setup

This turns out to be a great matchup for a number of reasons.

--Arizona was 0-3 all time against UConn.

--UConn's shooting guards were the best in the tournament.

--Arizona's point guards were the best in the tournament.
--Both teams were best playing with a smaller lineup. At times, each team played with four guards on the floor, a dynamic not often seen.

Game Summary

Arizona jumped out to an early lead only to see UConn take a 40-37 lead into the half. With just over a minute left, Arizona led 78-74. Ray Allen hit a 3 on the next trip and Charlie Villanueva fouled Mike Bibby with 16 seconds left. Bibby hit the front end of a one-and-one but missed the second.

After two backscreens from Emeka Okafor and Rudy Gay, Ben Gordon fired a three which was off the mark. Richard Hamilton, however, rebounded the miss and hit a fallaway jumper in the lane (very reminiscent of this play) to send the game into OT.

In overtime, Caron Butler and Jason Terry traded jumpers.

With the score tied at 86, the Wildcats had the ball with 0:14 left in OT. The game would come down to Terry-Bibby-Arenas-Jefferson-Iguodala against Gordon-Villanueva-Gay-Butler-Okafor.

Arenas brings the ball past half court... 0:12, 0:11, 0:10...

Jefferson sets a high ball screen... 0:09, 0:08, 0:07...

Arenas drives right, Caron Butler steps off Iguodala to double... 0:06, 0:05..

Arenas dishes to Iguodala. Gordon helps leaving Jason Terry wide open ... 0:04, 0:03..

Iguodala hits Terry 17-feet from the bucket on the left baseline. Terry takes the shot and buries it. 0:00.

Arizona wins!!! The Vegas crowd is beside itself, getting all it paid for and more.

Final Score

(2) Arizona 88, (1) UConn 86 (OT)

All-Tournament Team

G- Jason Terry
G- Ray Allen
F- Andre Iguodala
F- Carmelo Anthony
C- Tim Duncan (Tournament MVP)

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