By Lewis Gould
The newest Sixer beat the buzzer and won a bet last night in Charlotte.
JJ Redick jokingly bet Jimmy Butler that he wouldn’t call “game” on the final shot.
Butler responded with “bet.”
And then Butler drained a 3-pointer as the overtime buzzer sounded and the Sixers overcame an NBA season-high 60 points from Kemba Walker to beat the Hornets 122-119.
“As much as I wanted the shot to go in to win the game, I also wanted it to go in because I didn’t want Kemba to give me 70,” Butler said with a laugh. “I wanted it to stop at 60.”
Walker’s 60 points were a career high and topped Klay Thompson’s 52 for Golden State against Chicago on Oct. 29 for most in the league this season.
Philadelphia coach Brett Brown called Walker’s effort “amazing and incredible.”
“We tried double-teaming him, we tried hard-hedging him,” Brown said. “The reality of it is, is that you have Joel (Embiid) and Jimmy in that situation a lot and he is doing that against two all-league defensive players. He is just hard to guard and he is really unique. … Sixty points in an NBA game against a pretty good defensive team is a remarkable effort.”
Walker had 37 and 30 points in his previous two games against the 76ers, but only shot a combined 33 percent..
Walker finished 21 of 34 from the field and had six 3-pointers. He made all 12 foul shots and had seven rebounds and four assists.
But while Walker had the big numbers, Butler made the big plays.
Along with his game-winner, he also blocked Walker’s shot on a drive with 15 seconds left and then saved the ball from going out of bounds. Walker thought he got fouled, but it wasn’t called.
“That was an incredible 20 seconds of Jimmy Butler,” Brown said.
Said Butler: “I didn’t think (Walker) would settle for a jump shot in that moment. So he did what I wanted him to do (and drove). I just got a piece of the ball.”
As for the game-winner, he said it’s a shot he practices often, and worked on it 50 times earlier that morning.
Since the start of last season, Butler had been 0-for-11 on game-tying or go-ahead field goal attempts in the final 10 seconds — the most misses without a make in the NBA.