It took the NBA season nearly a month to get a buzzer-beater and it took the Charlotte Bobcats until their 505th regular season game (plus four playoff games), for a player to net a triple-double. But both happened on an exciting Saturday night in the NBA.
Rudy Gay beat the buzzer and the Heat with a jumper from the baseline to win. It was the third buzzer-beater of his career. All three have come at home and that trio marks the last three that the Grizzles have had. In the last nine NBA seasons, only one other player has more homecourt buzzer-beaters: Kobe Bryant with four.
Gay's three buzzer-beaters are tied for the most by anyone age 24 or younger over the last nine seasons, matching the number by Gilbert Arenas.
The last three players to beat the Heat with a buzzer-beater make for a pretty good list: Kobe Bryant (December 4, 2009), Paul Pierce (April 23, 2010-- playoffs, Game 3 of first round), and Gay.
Meanwhile, Stephen Jackson became the first Bobcat to post a triple-double on Saturday night against the Suns, succeeding where Emeka Okafor (20 points, 10 blocks, nine rebounds against the Knicks in 2007) and Boris Diaw (17 points, nine rebounds, nine assists versus the Hawks in 2010) came up just short. Coincidentally Diaw helped Jackson out today, supporting the effort with 26 points.
It's the fifth time this month that a player had at least 10 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists (a "traditional" triple double) in a game. It's also the seventh time this season that a player has reached those numbers. By contrast, we didn't have seven such games in the NBA last season until mid-January.
Jackson didn't have a game all season with more than six rebounds or more than six assists until this one. His one other triple-double also came against the Suns, on February 4, 2009. Jackson still has a ways to go to catch another Jackson on the triple-doubles list. ESPN broadcaster Mark Jackson had 18 triple-doubles in his NBA career.