Kendrick Perkins explains why Anthony Davis’ Game 2 buzzer-beater was unstoppable
A lot of people are criticizing Denver Nuggets big man Mason Plumlee online for his classic defensive blunder against the Los Angeles Lakers in the dying seconds of Game 2 on Sunday. But as far as ESPN NBA analyst Kendrick Perkins is concerned, there was nothing the 6-foot-11 slotman could have done to stop Anthony Davis from draining that buzzer-beating 3-pointer to give LA a 2-0 lead in the West Finals.
In the aftermath of that classic playoff battle, Plumlee’s name became a trending topic on Twitter. The 30-year-old high-flyer, after all, was supposed to be the one guarding AD during that crucial final possession. Interestingly, Plumlee opted to help Jerami Grant to double LeBron James, allowing AD to receive the pass from Rajon Rondo. The rest, as we know of, is now history.
The Brow drained an off-balanced dagger right over the stretched arm of Nikola Jokic, who tried his best to clean up Plumlee’s mess.
Lakers lead 2-0pic.twitter.com/tZito6tJ9v
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) September 21, 2020
A closer look at the play showed that Grant requested Plumlee to help prior to the inbound. Perhaps in anticipation of a pick that never came, the reserve big went straight to James’ direction and perhaps expected Grant to make the rotation to AD.
Fans and pundits alike were quick to roast Plumlee for that costly lapse in judgment. However, the outspoken Kendrick Perkins came to his defense. The retired NBA player posted a clip of himself explaining why it wouldn’t have mattered even if Plumlee never left his initial assignment.
As Perkins saw it, Davis is a transcendent talent who possesses a wide array of moves not expected from a player of his size.
“No one in the world knew that Anthony Davis was going to be running full-speed off a wheel action like he was JJ Redick or Kyle Korver for a catch-and-shoot 3-pointer to end the game,” the one-time NBA champion explained.
“That just shows you how special AD is. They don’t teach lock-and-trail for in the NBA for big men. That’s just something you don’t see every day. You cannot blame Denver or Mason Plumlee for that spectacular play.”
Here’s the full clip of Perk’s mini-rant.
It’s NOTHING Denver or Mason Plumlee could have done to stop AD game winner last night!!! Carry on… pic.twitter.com/lOUF2QgEbQ
— Kendrick Perkins (@KendrickPerkins) September 21, 2020
While Perk does have some points, Mason Plumlee could have at least made it a bit harder for AD by not giving him such a wide-open look. Plus, Anthony Davis was the guy on fire that moment, scoring 10 consecutive points for the Lakers to close the game.
Plumlee will certainly be the scapegoat of that Game 2 defeat. He better come up with a much better defensive output in Game 3 to atone for his mistake.