LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Los Angeles Lakers guard Danny Green missed a game-winning, last-second shot in an NBA Finals game and some people lost all sense of decency.
Green and his fiancée, Blair Bashen, have received death threats on social media.
“It’s a basketball game. People are emotional. Fans are emotional,” Green said Sunday morning about eight hours before Game 6 between Los Angeles and the Miami Heat. “I hope they don’t take it that seriously. I hope that they are that passionate about voting or getting justice for these people who deserve justice or get some better change in the country.
“It’s just a basketball game at the end of the day and they’re taking out their emotions and they need someone to blame. It came down to the last play and of course I’m the easy target.”
With 7.1 seconds left in the fourth quarter of Friday’s game, Green missed a wide-open shot from the top of the 3-point line on a pass from LeBron James and the Lakers trailing 109-108.
Had he made it, the Lakers likely would have won the game and the championship.
“Basketball wise, it was a good look.” Green said. “I had more time than I realized. I should’ve taken more time. I probably rushed it a little bit. I was a little off balance. But we got a good look. We had a second opportunity. Trying to come out and play back again. I’ll do anything to get that shot back, trust me. You’re going to make some. You’re going to miss some. It’s part of the game. I’ve been in that situation plenty of times. I’ve made some. I’ve missed some. Unfortunate it was for us to close out the series, that would’ve been great to win it.
“But any person that plays sports and any person that plays basketball knows that it doesn’t come down to that last play. It’s never on one play.”
Green, who is battling a hip injury, struggled with his shot through the first three games, making just four of 20 3-pointers. But he made four of his next 10 leading up to his final shot in Game 5.
“I’ll take it on time next time. Same opportunity. I’ll go in confidence, not shaken and not worried. I have a lot of confidence in our group and myself. I’ve been in that situation plenty of times.”
He learned about the death threats from Bashen. He maintained he was unfazed.
“Didn’t faze me, didn’t care, just ignore it,” Green said. “Those people’s opinions don’t matter to me. Only the people in the locker room and on this roster are the things that are relevant and that matter to me. If they’re still confident and encouraged and still believe in me and believe in us, that’s all that matters to me. We can get this things don’t. All the rest is background noise.
“I should probably be a little bit more paranoid, a little bit more safe. I am safe usually. I’m just not one of those guys that’s going to live my life that way – worried about what other people think, say or do. I’m usually protected. I’m usually safe, and I’m usually OK and confident and secure in my own my mind and my home.”