Shai Gilgeous-Alexander makes the game-winning shot for the Thunder

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (All Pro Reels, Wikimedia Commons)

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander won the 2023 Northern Star Award, presented to the best Canadian Athlete of the Year on Monday. The Thunder guard strengthened the argument for all those who voted for him with an elite performance Saturday against the Denver Nuggets.

Gilgeous-Alexander scored a game-high 25 points in a 118-117 Thunder win over the reigning NBA Finals champions from Ball Arena in Denver, Colorado. What stood out the most was one particular shot, as with one second left in the fourth quarter, the Toronto native made an eight foot jump shot to give Oklahoma City the one point win. The game-winning shot came seven seconds after Gilgeous-Alexander got the defensive rebound after a missed three-point attempt by Nikola Jokic. In addition to the 25 points, Gilgeous-Alexander had eight assists, six rebounds, and two steals, and was a +3.

In 2023-24, Gilgeous-Alexander is averaging 30.7 points per game, 6.4 assists per game, 5.5 rebounds per game, and 2.7 steals per game. He has a field goal percentage of .542, a three-point percentage of .324, and a free throw percentage of .913.

With the win, the Thunder are at 16 wins and eight losses. They are currently the second best team in the Western Conference. Only the Minnesota Timberwolves are better at 19 wins and five losses.

 

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