Video: Raptors’ Fred VanVleet gets the bounce on a desperation long-two
The basketball continues to bounce Fred VanVleet’s way in the 2019 NBA Finals. The Toronto Raptors backup point guard helped secure his team’s 118-109 win in Game 1 with a desperation jumper in the waning moments.
With 3:26 left in the game, the Raptors led the visiting Golden State Warriors by 10 points, 108-98. The Warriors’ Draymond Green and Kevin Looney double-teamed the Raptors’ Kawhi Leonard at the top of the key.
With approximately two seconds left on Toronto’s shot clock, Leonard dishes off to VanVleet in the left corner. VanVleet tries to shake off Golden State’s Klay Thompson by shooting in a one-dribble step-back motion. The ball hits the backboard, circles around the hoop several times, and then drops in just before the shot clock goes off.
Oh we're hitting that shot now? pic.twitter.com/D1iacJoYRk
— Dime (@DimeUPROXX) May 31, 2019
VanVleet’s backbreaker put an end to the Warriors’ comeback hopes. He simply iced the game with that spectacular buzzer beater.
After a terrible second-round playoff series against the Philadelphia 76ers, VanVleet has come into his own. He scored 48 points in the Raptors’ final three games against the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference Finals.
VanVleet’s shining moment came in Game 6 in Milwaukee. He scored all of his 21 points from three-point distance. As a result, he became just the second bench player in NBA playoff history to make at least seven triples in the last three years. The Cleveland Cavaliers’ Channing Frye did it against the Warriors in the 2016 NBA Finals.
Toronto’s victory was a total team effort. Kawhi scored 23 and Fred VanVleet scored 15 off the bench. As a team they played outstanding defense!
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) May 31, 2019
There has been no letdown from Fred VanVleet since the Eastern Conference Finals. The Raptors need him to continue to take some of the scoring load off Kawhi Leonard.
Can the Golden State Warriors stifle Fred VanVleet in Game 2? Stay tuned.