Among those amazed by the game-winning basket for Deandre Ayton and the Suns were ESPN personalities Stephen A. Smith and Michael Wilbon.
After trailing 2-1 in their opening round series against the Los Angeles Lakers, the Phoenix Suns have rattled off nine straight wins, and now they’re two victories away from their first NBA Finals appearance since 1993. Perhaps most impressive is their last two wins, which have come without point guard Chris Paul, who is in COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
Their latest win in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals against the LA Clippers on Tuesday featured a play for the ages. Trailing the Clippers 103-102 with 0.9 seconds remaining, the Suns orchestrated a brilliant alley-oop from out of bounds from Jae Crowder to Deandre Ayton.
It was a truly amazing play, leaving everyone impressed. Among those who were in attendance and speechless at the “Valley-Oop” were ESPN personalities Stephen A. Smith and Michael Wilbon.
You know a play is pretty special if Stephen A. has nothing to say about it. Executed to perfection, it started with a great pass by Crowder, followed by the perfect pick from Devin Booker, and finished off by Ayton.
Both Smith and Wilbon have been around sports for decades. They’ve seen some amazing moments in person, and now they have another. Wilbon joined The Waddle & Silvy Show on ESPN 1000 on Wednesday and gave some detail on his priceless reaction.
“I was speechless last night. It’s one of the great finishes I’ve ever seen in basketball,” Wilbon said. “It took a second for me to realize it went through the net, and then it happened. The explosion in the building was like Chicago, New York, Philly, the Garden — a lot the places where exciting things have happened in NBA history.”
The Suns’ Valley-Oop game-winner over the Clippers left many speechless
It’s the kind of play that sums up how well things have been going for Phoenix, and it’s been a magical run that has the Suns so close to reaching the promised land. News broke on Wednesday regarding the status of Paul, who is reported to return to the lineup for Game 3.
Having the extra rest should be beneficial for the 36-year old Paul in this final stretch of playoff games. He’s been the ultimate playmaker and leader for this young and talented Suns team. Enough can’t be said of the turnaround following the additions of Paul and Crowder, who were added to a team that appeared to be on the rise in last summer’s bubble with an 8-0 record.
Still, in the words of Kobe Bryant, “Job’s not finished.” The Clippers have been down 2-0 in each of their last two series and stormed back to win.
With or without Kawhi Leonard, it doesn’t appear they’ll go out quietly.