Shai Gilgeous-Alexander doesn’t care about your historical achievement. While Damian Lillard may win the battle for becoming Portland’s all-time leading scorer, It was SGA that won the war after sinking Lillard and the Trail Blazers with a ridiculous game-winner to give the Oklahoma City Thunder a 123-121 win on Monday.
The former Kentucky floor general won the game after hitting baseline fadeaway to beat the buzzer. The buzzer-beater capped a 35-point performance for the emerging Canadian superstar.
“I caught it,” Gilgeous-Alexander said per ESPN. “I was going to try to face up, but I saw the double team so I tried to spin away from it into the shot.”
The shot heard round the world pic.twitter.com/GGRv5IvTZj
— OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) December 20, 2022
SGA’s heroic moment was the perfect response to Dame Time’s usual clutch moment. Lillard (28 points) knocked down a reverse layup with 3.5 seconds left to tie the game 121. The loss makes Lillard’s clutch bucket and record-setting performance moot, but he couldn’t help but heap a ton of praise on to the 24-year-old guard who ranks third in scoring.
“He’s impressive,” Lillard said. “He’s obviously a really good player. Not just a good young player. He’s coming into his own. I can remember when I was younger and I became the leader of a team. And I was basically introducing myself as the lead guard on the team, and I was going after it, you know, being aggressive. And I see that he’s in that state. He’s trying to show what he can do.”
Lillard also said he likes how SGA is “playing free” and how OKC “believes in him” and that his teammates “understand
Lillard, on Gilgeous-Alexander: “He’s in a situation where he’s playing free. You know, they believe in him. He’s got a group of guys that understand that he’s the leader. He’s the guy. He’s in a great position. He’s off to a great start.”
OKC will look to build on this dagger win with second consecutive win over the Trail Blazers.
Best caption ever? pic.twitter.com/mIiWHmmOfY
— SLAM (@SLAMonline) December 20, 2022
When it was all said and done, SGA posted the coldest buzzer-beater IG post caption ever.
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