Damian Lillard is a bad, bad man.
Saturday evening, the Blazers franchise guard scored six points in the final nine seconds to steal a victory in Chicago. The game-winning jumper occurred after his teammate, Gary Trent Jr., won a jump ball and then Dame did the rest.
It was the first time a player hit a buzzer-beating game-winner after his team won a jump ball with under ten seconds left since Kobe Bryant did it during the 2006 NBA Playoffs in overtime to take a 3-1 lead against the higher-seeded Phoenix Suns, as pointed out by Elias Sports.
Of course, you remember the shot without having to click play on the video. It's one of the most iconic NBA moments of the 21st century despite not meaning much in the grand scheme of things, with the Suns completing a 3-1 comeback to advance to the second round.
Still, it's a magical moment showcasing the best talent the game of basketball has to offer doing incredible things making his fans believe anything is possible. Now, 15 years later, Damian Lillard has that same effect on Rip City.
Last season in the bubble, Lillard willed Portland to the playoffs with one of the most dominant eight-game stretches in modern NBA history. No matter the deficit or time on the clock, the Blazers were never out of a game with Lillard dribbling the ball up the floor.
Kobe and Lillard were alike in that way. Both of them never gave up while having the talent, skill, and will to make the impossible happen time and time again.
It's no wonder no one had done this since Bryant.