Today is the one-year anniversary of Kawhi Leonard’s quadruple-doink, which knocked the Sixers out of the playoffs with a game-seven loss in Toronto.
We don’t need to rehash the shot itself, since it brings back a lot of crummy memories for Philly sports fans who were enjoying the deepest Sixers’ playoff run since 2012, when Doug Collins’ team beat the Derrick Rose-less Bulls before pushing the Celtics to seven games in the conference semifinals.
It is, however, worth revisiting the final minutes of this game, which was microcosm of the Sixers’ biggest issue during the series:
They just didn’t execute on enough of those fourth quarter, half court possessions.
The ironic thing is that the Sixers really didn’t have any business being in this game at all. They started 0-9 from the floor, took 24 fewer shots than the Raptors, and lost in just about every significant statistical category. They were out-rebounded, lost the turnover battle, and again couldn’t do much in transition, but played ferocious defense and clawed their way back after an incredibly rocky start.
It brought them to a point where they had several chances to take the lead with less than four minutes on the clock, but came up empty on three possessions, which had a huge impact on the outcome. Perhaps they would have ended up in the Eastern Conference finals if these sequences had turned out differently: