With the Lakers down three late and their offense stalling, they turned to the ol' Hack-A-Dwight strategy, which they had endured the previous season. The Lakers extended the game and the Rockets suffered with Dwight going 5-for-12 from the line in the final quarter.
Nevertheless, Houston held a small lead with seconds remaining. Los Angeles bungled their penultimate play, nearly turning the ball over on the baseline. Then they followed it with a doozy, a three-point attempt right over the object of their passionate ire.
Houston's guards got held up and Blake ran out to the sideline for the inbounds pass as Dwight Howard struggled to cover the ground given up in the Lakers' screens on the rocket's backcourt.
But it was to no avail.
The Rockets missed their last-second chance and that was that. Who needs Kobe anyway?