Imagine stepping to the line, two points away from both a championship and a fat check for $2 million dollars. All you have to do is make a couple free throws. No pressure. How nervous are you in that moment? Do you even hit the rim? This is why I always stress how important FT shooting is. You never know when you could win a shit ton of money. If you’re William Buford and you have ice in your veins it’s a piece of cake. Last season in Greece Buford shot 86% from the line so you know he had to be feeling great as he approached the stripe. Now granted he had a little wiggle room given the score, but when you get an opportunity to close the door and be the hero you have to come through in that moment. You need to channel your inner Rick Barry and cash in both FTs.
The impressive thing is that Buford didn’t overthink it. That’s what we see get guys into trouble so many times from the charity stripe. He had the mental toughness to block out all the things he was about to buy with his share of the winnings and stayed focused enough to knock em down. The first one is clearly the hardest, once you see that one fall you can exhale a little bit and despite it not being the cleanest make on the second attempt it counts all the same and it gave us a fantastic moment. It’s early August, we’re waiting on the FIBA World Cup to start, I’ll take any drama on the hardwood I can get and this certainly fit the bill.
Also shoutout Jared Sullinger on the coaching performance of a lifetime. I know how he’s going to be spending his share of the pot
And while this was fun and all, still doesn’t touch the best showing in TBT history
So I’ll ask you. You step to the line in that situation, you think you could make those FTs or do you poop your pants?