Anthony Edwards has reached the massive dunk phase of his maturation process.
The Minnesota Timberwolves’ rookie guard just put an exclamation point on an already promising first year in the league.
With 18 seconds to go in the third quarter of an eventual 86-81 loss to Toronto, Edwards comes in from the wing, gets cleared for take-off and leaps into the air as a mortal only to come down as his superhero alter ego.
And let us have a moment of silence for the Raptors' Yuta Watanabe who is survived by a team that went on to not only win the game but keep Edwards to a Clark Kent-ian seven points on 3-of-14 shooting from the field.
But, like, whatever.
And the moment wasn’t lost on the NBA or the rest of the Internet.
Some on the Internet were in clear fuddy-duddy mode, talking about stat lines and poor shooting.
So, yes. LaMelo Ball clearly has momentum for Rookie of the Year at this moment in the season. Yahoo! Sports’ Frank Schwab breaks down the race, which isn’t all that competitive.
Right now it’s Ball, Tyrese Haliburton and Edwards in a distant third according to the latest Vegas odds.
The 19-year-old from Atlanta is averaging 14.3 points through 30 games. His field goal percentage is a paltry 37.8% and he's shooting .306 from behind the arc. Yet, the heart wants what the heart wants.
And it’s dunks like the one above and the fearless shooting in LeBron James’ face as seen below that has me giddy for what his career might become.
Edwards recently dropped 28 points on the Lakers in a 112-104 loss. It proved the budding star was eager to learn from his mistakes.
He used that opportunity to get after the game’s best and said as much after the game, via USA Today.
“Last time I played versus the Lakers, I played very bad,” Edwards said. “I feel like as a team we were very bad; we were not very aggressive. We were scared; we were intimidated. I took it personal and took it upon myself to show that I don’t care who I’m going against, I’m still going to play the same way as I would play against somebody that isn’t the Lakers.”
James was complimentary of the rookie. “First of all, (he is) a great kid,” James told Spectrum SportsNet, again via USA Today. “Obviously, we know what he can do with the game of basketball. He showed that tonight, been showing throughout the course of his rookie season so far.”
That was one game. And last night featured one glorious dunk. Both of which ended in Minnesota's defeat. However, this is a learning process I’m not going to take my eyes off of for one second.