Warriors playoff push dealt a dagger with absurd game-winner summing up their season

Golden State Warriors v Dallas Mavericks
Golden State Warriors v Dallas Mavericks / Tim Heitman/GettyImages

The Golden State Warriors are no strangers to having their hearts broken by Kyrie Irving, but on Sunday the veteran guard found a new way to hurt the franchise on a day they weren't even playing.

While the Warriors had the day off after their 128-121 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday, Irving was busy pulling off one of the craziest game-winners you're ever likely to see in the Dallas Mavericks' 107-105 victory over the reigning champion Denver Nuggets.

Kyrie Irving's absurd game-winner has dealt a major blow to the Golden State Warriors' hopes of earning a top eight seed

With 2.8 seconds on the clock and the game tied, Irving made an audacious running floater over Nikola Jokic with his off-hand. It was a wild finish to a game Golden State would have been desperately hoping Denver got the better of.

It's the sort of position the Warriors have put themselves in -- needing other results to go their way down the stretch rather than having destiny entirely in their own hands. A Jamal Murray three had given the Nuggets a three-point lead with under 30 seconds remaining, before Luka Doncic responded with a triple of his own immediately after the timeout.

Dallas' win keeps them three games ahead of Golden State in the Western Conference ninth-seed, with the two teams still to meet on a pair of occasions over the last 10 days of the season.

The Warriors had earlier got a result to go their way, having watched the Milwaukee Bucks beat the Phoenix Suns despite the absence of two-time MVP Giannis Antetekounmpo. It leaves the Suns, Mavericks and Sacramento Kings all tied in the standings, while the Warriors and Lakers remain three games behind.

Phoenix and Sacramento, not Dallas, may now provide the best avenue for Golden State to try and rise up into the top eight seeds. The Suns have the second most difficult schedule remaining in the league, while the Kings have the 10th hardest.

The Mavericks and Warriors each have top five easiest schedules remaining, with the latter set to start a three-game home-stand when they host the New York Knicks at Chase Center on Monday.