Video: Rockets dodged a bullet after James Harden’s mental lapse on defense vs. Stephen Curry
Lady luck was on the Houston Rockets’ side in Game 5. In the final moments of the game, the Golden State Warriors had a chance to take a lead with a 3-point shot. James Harden lost track of Stephen Curry — the game’s greatest 3-point assassin — who was wide open from downtown. Fortunately for Harden, the Warriors failed to locate Curry right away.
As posted by Nick Right of First Things First, the Rockets — Harden, in particular, dodged a bullet. If Quinn Cook would’ve made the extra pass to Curry and convert on a three, the Warriors would’ve taken a two-point advantage with less than a minute to go. It might’ve been all they needed to lock the victory.
On the Quinn Cook missed 3 w/ :43 left, Harden completely lost track of Curry who ran wide open. Didn't see this in real time. Wow. pic.twitter.com/pNfwyM9MKN
— nick wright (@getnickwright) May 25, 2018
Harden is infamous for his mental lapses on defense. His antics have made it to Shaqtin-A-Fool and was even named MVP of the gag show. Yet his activity, or lack of defensive activity, is definitely not acceptable at this stage in the playoffs.
Critics believe that his no-show on defense is a way for him to rest up so he can turn up his motor back again on offense.
The clip highlights how lucky the Rockets were in the game. Harden himself was struggling on offense. He missed all of his 11 attempts from the downtown. He shot just 23.8 percent from the field. Despite this, he remained aggressive and chipped in 18 points, mostly via three throws.