Before we get to my story. If you look at the end of the QBSacker's video above, you can see the final play. Yes, Terrence Ross is open on the wing - sort of. If you look closely, there is a defender - Tyler Lamb - playing the passing lanes. So the pass to Ross would not be quite as simple as some people make it out to be. Lamb is 6-5 so Gant couldn't simply throw it over him. Could he have found a way to get Ross the ball, yes, I'm sure Gant realizes that now. But in the heat of the moment, it's not that simple.
As I said yesterday on Twitter, it's not ideal for Gant to take the final shot. But that isn't what lost the Huskies the game. Awful turnovers in the second half, failure to stretch the lead at given points during the game and missed 3-pointers late cost the Huskies more than Gant's shot.
Now we have to wait for a few hours to see if the Huskies will split the league title with Cal or if Stanford can knock off their rival and give the Huskies the title outright.
From my game story ....
“I hate having to wait to watch this game tomorrow and know that it’s in someone else’s hands,” Gant said. “We should have won that game. We had them beat.”
Much of the second-guessing after the game came down to the Huskies’ final possession.
Washington was down 71-69 after David Wear’s put-back with 44.2 seconds remaining. The Huskies tried to play for two possessions, getting a quick shot from Terrence Ross out of a timeout. But the fadeaway jumper was short and Washington corralled the rebound and called time.
“We were trying to get a ball screen and spread the floor and get it to the open man,” coach Lorenzo Romar said.
The open man happened to be Gant, who set the ball screen for Gaddy after he held the ball for 10 seconds. Both Ross and C.J. Wilcox were tightly guarded when Gaddy came off the screen.
“They weren’t going to leave me or Terrence,” Wilcox said.
So Gant got the ball at the top of the key. After a little hesitation and a slight fake, he fired up a 3-point attempt with 13 seconds remaining that was short. The rebound caromed off Tony Wroten’s hand to UCLA’s Jerime Anderson.
“I saw (the shot) clearly,” Gant said. “It felt good. I just had a bad shooting night, again.”
Gant scored two points on 1-for-7 shooting from the field, including 0-for-3 accuracy from 3-point range. The performance brought to mind memories of the loss to Cal earlier this season in which Gant tried and missed a game-tying 3-point attempt despite being 0-for-9 from the field.
Ross, who scored 18 points and buried four 3-pointers, appeared to be open on the wing.
“The guy closed out and Terrence was open, one pass away,” Romar said. “We felt that if we could reverse it and get the ball there, but we took the shot. Maybe we could have made the extra pass.”
Gant said UCLA’s Tyler Lamb thwarted the pass attempt.
“I would’ve passed it to Ross, but they were sending a guy into the passing lane,” Gant said. “It would have been hard for me to pass it. When I couldn’t get it to Ross, I felt like I should take the shot.”
Ross said Lamb might have been able to make a play on any pass from Gant.
“I think it would have been (difficult),” Ross said. “Lamb was playing the passing lanes the whole game. It was a tough situation.”