Derek Fisher shoots a buzzer beater against the Los Angeles Clippers in 2010

In timed sports, a buzzer beater is a successful shot that upon completion leaves zero seconds on the game clock. A buzzer sounds whenever a game clock expires, hence the name "buzzer beater". In basketball, the concept normally applies to baskets that beat an end-of-quarter/2nd-half/overtime buzzer but is sometimes applied to shots that beat the shot clock buzzer.

Officials in the National Collegiate Athletic Association, National Basketball Association, Women's National Basketball Association, Serie A (Italy), and the Euroleague (Final Four series only, effective 2006) are required to use instant replay to assess whether a shot made at the end of a period was in fact released before the game clock expired. Since 2002, the NBA also has mandated LED light strips along the edges of the backboard and the edge of the scorer's table for the purposes of identifying the end of a period.

Notable buzzer beaters

Although buzzer beaters are fairly common, several instances have been recognized as special occasions:



This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (April 2021)

For a more comprehensive list, see List of longest NBA field goals.

Please help by adding regular season buzzer beaters to this section. If you see it, edit this section and add it. Do not edit in the § Playoffs section.


This section is for playoff buzzer beaters. If you see any regular season buzzer beater, edit in section § NBA.

Olympics and Europe


This section has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page. (Learn how and when to remove these template messages) This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (April 2021) (Learn how and when to remove this message) This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (April 2021) (Learn how and when to remove this message)



In other sports

The term is sometimes applied to analogous achievements in other sports.

Ice hockey

In ice hockey, a buzzer beater is a goal that is scored just before the clock expires in a period. Unlike in basketball, the puck must completely cross the goal line with 0.1 seconds or more remaining on the clock in order for the goal to count; if the period expires (the exact moment when the green goal light comes on at 0.0 seconds) before the puck completely crosses the goal line, the goal is disallowed.


Further information: Hail Mary pass

See also: Icing the kicker

In Australian rules football there are kicks after the siren, where a mark or free kick awarded just before the end of a quarter may be kicked as the final action of that period. In Gaelic football play is extended to allow for the kick of a free kick or puck awarded prior to the end of a half.[42]

In gridiron football, a touchdown after time expires or a field goal (or, much more rarely, a successful fair catch kick in American football or an open-field single point in Canadian) kicked as time expires can be described as a "buzzer beater," though no actual buzzers are used in that sport. More generally, in all codes, if a play (whether or not involving a kick) is in progress at the time the clock expires, play continues until the ball is dead. (In American football, the snap on the buzzer-beating play must take place before the clock expired, except if the defense commits a foul on the last play, in which case an untimed down is added. In Canadian football, a play can and must be executed even if the clock expires after the previous play but before the snap.) Several important games have been decided on the outcome of buzzer beaters, such as Super Bowl XXXVI and Super Bowl XXXVIII, both of which were decided on successful kicks by Adam Vinatieri; in contrast, Scott Norwood's infamous missed kick in Super Bowl XXV decided that game in favor of the opposing New York Giants. A related concept in football is the Hail Mary pass.

In rugby union the game does not end until the ball goes dead after time has expired – therefore if a side trailing by less than one score can maintain possession and keep the ball in play they have a chance of victory. A rule change in 2017[43] amended the rules so that if a penalty is awarded the ball can be kicked out and a line-out taken, even if time has elapsed. The rules in rugby league also allow for play after time has elapsed; however, a tackle will also end the game, meaning that significant extensions are less likely.


Starting with the 2018 season, the National Federation of State High School Associations rules for high school boys' field lacrosse in the United States allow for buzzer-beaters.[44] A goal counts if the shot was released before the official's whistle signaling the end of play for any period of the game, even if it goes in after having previously contacted part of the goal or a defensive player (post-whistle shots that contact an offensive player in any way before entering the goal, however, do not count). The opposing team may request a stick check after buzzer-beaters, unless it comes at the end of the game and does not result in overtime, since the rules consider the game over at that point.[45]

US Lacrosse similarly changed the youth rules the same season to allow buzzer-beaters.[46] However, the National Collegiate Athletic Association rules for men's lacrosse still require that any shot enter the goal before the whistle to score.[47]


Similar to in ice hockey, goals in regular handball gameplay only count if they cross the goal line before time runs out. The exception is if a free throw or a seven-metre throw is called while the clock runs out. Should a goal be scored in such a scenario, and the shooting player has kept one of their legs (Can be either one, but they cannot switch the leg partway through) on the ground during the shot,[48] the goal counts.

See also


  1. ^ [bare URL PDF]
  2. ^ "The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on April 5, 1983 · Page 11". 5 April 1983.
  3. ^ Laettner's buzzer beater ended '92 classic
  4. ^ "Officials have to check replay on shot". ESPN. Retrieved January 25, 2021.
  5. ^ Video of Jordan Snipes full-court shot on YouTube
  6. ^ Player Who Made Miracle Shot Does It Again [permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Ranking Tucker's clutch 3-pointer [permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Hutchens, Terry (2013-02-08). "Illinois Fighting Illini upset No. 1 Indiana Hoosiers". USA Today. Retrieved 2014-12-16.
  9. ^ O'Donnell, Ricky (March 19, 2016). "Northern Iowa stuns Texas with halfcourt, game-winning buzzer beater". SB Nation. Retrieved March 23, 2016.
  10. ^ Wolken, Dan (March 21, 2016). "Bronson Koenig drills game-winning jumper to send Wisconsin to Sweet 16". USA Today. Retrieved March 21, 2016.
  11. ^ "Larry Johnson - Hornets at Sonics - 1992 (BUZZER BEATER)". YouTube. Event occurs at 7:25. Retrieved October 16, 2023.
  12. ^ "Voshon Lenard Buzzer Beater at Orlando [15/03/1998]". YouTube. Retrieved September 17, 2022.
  13. ^ "Bucks vs Wizards, January 3, 2007". Retrieved 2022-08-03.
  14. ^ "Jazz vs Wizards, January 15, 2007". Retrieved 2022-08-03.
  15. ^ "Troy Murphy's Game Winning Tip Shot". YouTube. December 2, 2008. Archived from the original on 2021-12-21. Retrieved October 25, 2021.
  16. ^ Hughes, Grant. "LeBron James Hits Totally Preposterous Game-Winning 3-Pointer Against Warriors". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  17. ^ Mathur, Ashish (2019-02-28). "Dwyane Wade Makes Classic Kobe Bryant Reference After Game-Winner vs. Warriors". ClutchPoints. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  18. ^ "Cavaliers vs Jazz, January 14, 2010". Retrieved 2022-08-03.
  19. ^ Nesbitt, Andy. "Dwyane Wade hits wild 3-pointer at the buzzer to stun Warriors". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  20. ^ "NBA: Ben Simmons' OT buzzer-beater lifts Sixers over Spurs". ABS-CBN News. Field Level Media/Reuters. 2021-05-03. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  21. ^ George Mikan Bio
  22. ^ "Game-Winning Buzzer-Beaters".
  23. ^ " West's Heroics Can't Deprive Russell of 11th Title". Archived from the original on 2011-08-17. Retrieved 2007-11-16.
  24. ^ " Mr. Clutch Sinks a 60-Footer". Archived from the original on 2009-03-14. Retrieved 2007-02-01.
  25. ^ SUNS: Greatest Game Ever
  26. ^ " Jordan Hits "The Shot"". Archived from the original on 2014-08-12. Retrieved 2007-02-01.
  27. ^ " Playoff Buzzer-Beaters". Archived from the original on 2006-12-01. Retrieved 2007-02-01.
  28. ^ Cavs' LeBron James Drains Game-Winning Buzzer Beater to Beat Pacers, retrieved 2022-08-03
  29. ^ Zillgitt, Jeff. "Inside LeBron James' epic game-winning shot in Game 3 vs. the Raptors". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2022-08-03.
  30. ^ "Thunder vs. Trail Blazers - Game Summary - April 23, 2019". ESPN. Retrieved 2022-08-03.
  31. ^ Andrew Jackson (2023-05-28). "Chaos as buzzer beater saves Celtics' season, keeps shot at NBA history alive after Game 6 thriller". Fox Sports Australia. Retrieved 2023-05-28.
  32. ^ 1972 USA vs
  33. ^ Maccabi-Zalgiris Report Archived 2007-10-24 at
  34. ^ "- YouTube". YouTube.
  35. ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: "Play of the night: Zoran Planinic, Anadolu Efes Istanbul". YouTube.
  36. ^ "Smit kao Kecman, Partizan bez EL". (in Serbian). Retrieved 21 November 2014.
  37. ^ Dorotić, Mateo (25 April 2014). "Cedevita - Partizan 81:79 Nolan Smith trica (Croatian commentators)". Retrieved 21 November 2014.[dead YouTube link]
  38. ^ "Buzzer Beater Sends Greek Hoopsters to World Cup (video)". 16 September 2018.
  39. ^ Giongco, Mark (2016-10-19). "Brownlee nails buzzer-beater as Ginebra wins title, ends drought". Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  40. ^ "Barroca's buzzer-beater sinks Beermen, swings series to Hotshots". 2019-05-10. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  41. ^ Manila Bulletin Sports (2021-12-27). "Philip Manalang savors MPBL title with Basilan". Retrieved 2022-05-24.
  42. ^ "GAA Referee Handbook" (PDF). p. 25. Retrieved 3 April 2018.
  43. ^ "2017 Rugby Law Changes", "Sport24", 31/01/2017
  44. ^ 2018 Boys' Lacrosse Rule Book. Indianapolis, Indiana: National Federation of State High School Associations. 2018. p. 3.
  45. ^ Rule 4, Section 9, Article 2o, 2018 Rule Book, p. 42
  46. ^ Rule 4.8.1; 2018 Youth Boys' Rulebook (PDF). Towson, Maryland: US Lacrosse. 2018. p. 5. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  47. ^ Rule 4, Section 11a, 2017 and 2018 Men's Lacrosse Rules and Interpretations (PDF). Indianapolis, Indiana: National Collegiate Athletic Association. October 2016. p. 37. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
  48. ^ "EURO HANDBALL RULES". Urban Rec. Retrieved 26 January 2024. The thrower must keep one foot in contact with the floor, then pass or shoot.