In Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals, Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton delivered one of the most stunning moments in NBA playoff history, when he scored the winning bucket in the final second of the game off of an alley-oop inbounds pass.
The center’s effort and finish were so remarkable that he earned the approval of another notable DeAndre based in the state of Arizona.
DeAndre Hopkins took to Twitter to celebrate Ayton’s game-winning tip-in by juxtaposing the Game 2 alley-oop to his own Hail Mary catch in the Arizona Cardinals last-second win over the Buffalo Bills in Week 10 of the 2020 season. The two moments both took place in the Phoenix metropolitan area and both players share a namesake, as the NFL wide receiver pointed out.
“It’s the Deandre in us,” Hopkins wrote in his tweet, with accompanying pictures of the two iconic catches.
— Deandre Hopkins (@DeAndreHopkins) June 23, 2021
Ayton deserves ample credit for finishing off the Suns 104-103 victory over the Clippers on Wednesday. He ran to the rim confidently, leapt higher than Ivica Zubac, caught the pass and dropped the ball through the net just in time before the buzzer sounded. Few players could’ve pulled off the feat, but the 22-year-old center made the move look somewhat routine.
With a crafty play design from Monty Williams and a pinpoint pass from Jae Crowder, Ayton got the opportunity to be the hero. The Suns former No. 1 overall pick filled the role perfectly and gave the franchise a moment that fans will never forget.
Ayton and co. will now travel back to Los Angeles with a 2-0 advantage on the Clippers. The organization is just six wins away from their first NBA Championship.
Suffice it to say, DeAndre Hopkins will be pulling for Ayton and the Suns to get the job done.