It was the final minutes of Game 6 and LeBron James was shrinking like George Costanza’s wiener in a chilly swimming pool. Miami “fans” had already left the stadium, probably headed over to Filomena Tobias’s house to take E and inject their faces with jellyfish toxins. The game, the season, was slipping away. The Heat had gone cold. The Spurs were going to be the champs.
And then Jesus saved them. Of course he did.
You see, Jesus Shuttlesworth was born to hit game-winners. The guy’s got alligator blood. His balls are so big that Mario Chalmers has to follow him around on the court with a wheelbarrow. He’s a badass. That’s how he scored Rosario Dawson back in high school, and that’s how he beat his dad, Denzel Washington, in a win-or-go-to-jail game of one-on-one. He’s unflappable. If Manute Bol’s reanimated corpse came flying at him taped to the back of a flaming pterodactyl, he still would have made that shot.
Oh, and his stroke. Good lord, that stroke. Has there ever been one as beautiful? The way his arms coil up like a cobra as his eyes locks onto the rim, and then gracefully unravel as the ball comes spitting out in a perfect arch. It’s gorgeous. Sometimes I watch him play and by the end of the game I’m wondering how my pants got on the ground.
Was I mad that Jesus saved LeBron’s ass? Yes I was. I’m sure most people were. Watching LeBron lose is what keeps the economy going. But the fact that it was Jesus Shuttlesworth, and not literally any other member of the Heat, makes it acceptable. If Dwyane Wade or Mike Miller would have hit it I would have strangled them both with LeBron’s missing headband.
Anyway, how can you not love Jesus? First of all, the dude’s had a rough life. Denzel rage-killed his mom when he was 12, and then Rosario turned out to be a real backstabbing bitch. Those are two big blows. Then Denzel crawls back into his life after spending six years in jail to convince him to sign with Big State in exchange for a full pardon. Crazy stuff. It’s almost like his life is a Spike Lee movie or something.
Despite the personal tragedy, Jesus has had a long, successful career. That fact that he played for the Milwaukee Bucks and somehow didn’t wind up selling plastic keychains on the side of the road would be incredible enough, but Jesus is an overachiever. The guy’s won world titles, man. He’s living proof that if you make enough three-pointers and chew enough gum, you can actually bring your mother back from the dead.
And now he’s capped off his amazing journey by saving LeBron’s ass. Like, big time. I’m not oblivious to the fact that the Choo Choo Train had a great game, but he looked like shrimp fried turds when it mattered most. I haven’t seen such a pathetic display from a professional athlete since Mark Sanchez’s head wound up Brandon Moore’s asshole.
Then Jesus saved the day. Because it’s what he does, people.
Jesus hasn’t exactly been playing like the Jesus who clubbed Denzel Washington 11-5 in one-on-one back in 1998, but in that one beautiful moment, it was like he could walk on water again. I hated it and loved it at the same time. The catch, the release, the swish, the sideways gum chomp, the subtle three-point signal he gives down at his waste like he’s holstering a gun. Perfection. That one was for you Rosario, you two-timing slut.
LeBron was rescued, the Heat pulled back from the brink. With one shot, Jesus Shuttlesworth reminded us that he’s better at shooting threes than we’ll ever be at anything.