When the Oklahoma City Thunder began to tie the arc in a 118-109 victory over the Atlanta Hawks, they had two goals: to get an easy basket or to run time out of the clock.
Forward Darius Bazley found a way to do both. With about 10 seconds left on the shot clock, he created a lane to the rim and drove. John Collins received it on the rim.
Bazley maneuvered not just the ball around Collins, but his entire head. He squeezed twice and launched the fierce dunk.
“I call him a freak of nature, but he is an extraordinary athlete,” guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander said. “He can do so many things in the air, get so high with the gifts he has given him.”
He extended the Thunder’s lead to 11, essentially crowning the game.
Bazley smiled and laughed when asked about it and the reaction of his teammates. He couldn’t really describe the dunk itself, but he enjoyed the consequences.
“They were just kind of animated. It was the last quarter, I don’t remember the score, but I suppose it was great. His coach called a timeout, I’m sure we were running, ”Bazley said.
It was big. But that doesn’t mean the Thunder haven’t seen it before.
“He just made a regular basketball play for Baze, which is crazy,” Gilgeous-Alexander said.
As teammates celebrated with Bazley, Twitter also reacted. Here’s what Bazley had to say about mate:
And here’s another view of the takedown.