Don’t look now, but Shai Gilgeous-Alexander just might lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to a playoff berth that avoids needing the play-in tournament altogether. While it would take a strong close to the regular season and some help around them, Oklahoma City entered Friday’s slate of games 38-39 on the year, which puts them in 10th place in the Western Conference and two games back of the Golden State Warriors for the 6-seed.
The brilliance of Gilgeous-Alexander is a big reason why, as he has a legitimate case to be an All-NBA First-Team selection for his performance this season. And on Friday night during the Thunder’s game against the Indiana Pacers, Gilgeous-Alexander managed to stuff the stat sheet in a rather unique way: with one shoe on his foot.
Gilgeous-Alexander went up for a layup, made it, and hit the deck, where he ended up losing the sneaker on his left foot. He kept playing, though, all with his shoe in his hand.
SGA grabbed a rebound with a shoe in his hand pic.twitter.com/O3riq3C1du
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) April 1, 2023
Shai really lost his shoe and continuing playing pic.twitter.com/BKwR0DXMmn
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 1, 2023
It’s pretty impressive to snag a rebound and get one of your teammates going on a fast break while holding onto a sneaker, a situation that was remedied when a Josh Giddey layup attempt was blocked out of bounds. Gilgeous-Alexander could have tossed his sneaker over to the sidelines so he wasn’t holding onto things, or he could have just stayed behind the play and put it back on, but this was easily the funniest option.