Hamidou Diallo, a guard for the Oklahoma City Thunder, took home the top prize at this weekend’s NBA slam dunk competition, vaulting over 7-foot-1 basketball icon Shaquille O’Neal, ESPN reports. Not only did the 6-foot-5 Diallo clear Shaq, who stood under the basket facing away with head slightly bowed, but he managed to execute an elbow-deep dunk that left him hanging from the rim while tearing open his jersey to expose the superman logo hidden underneath.
“Superman alert!” tweeted the official NBA account.
Regarding his surprise special guest, Diallo was asked if he was confident going in that he would be able to clear O’Neal.
“Yeah, I was sure,” Diallo said. “I wouldn’t have brought him out there if I wasn’t sure.”
Diallo’s performance in the contest also included a last-minute change-up, after Dennis Smith selected Miami Heat legend Dwyane Wade for one of his own attempts. Diallo had planned on pulling Wade, his own childhood idol, out of the crowd for a similar dunk.
As a result, he had to settle for rapper Quavo, instead.
“Dennis stole my third dunk. I was going to use D-Wade last,” Diallo said. “That was my favorite player growing up. But it all worked out.”
He needed a score of 43 on that attempt in order to bring home the title, and he succeeded with a 45.
As impressive as Diallo’s performance was, it wasn’t the only one catching attention on social media and elsewhere after the competition. Opinions were widely split on the elaborate, but ultimately underwhelming dunk by Atlanta Hawks forward John Collins, who leaped over a scale model of the Wright Brothers’ plane while flanked by men dressed as Tuskegee Airmen.
Unfortunately for Collins, he clipped the prop and sent pieces flying, though as Slate points out, the real Wright Flyer actually suffered a worse fate, evidence that the busted aircraft may have indeed been historically accurate.
Also that night, Brooklyn’s Joe Harris went toe-to-toe with Golden State’s Steph Curry for the three-point title. Harris edged out Curry, who is widely considered to be the best shooter in the NBA, by two points. Harris made 12 straight and went 15 for 18 on “moneyball” shots, which are worth the most in competition.
Hami vs. Zion 2020 ????— Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) February 17, 2019
Diallo says he wants a Dunk Contest rematch in Chicago next year against Zion Williamson ???? (he lost to Zion in a high school dunk contest) (h/t @BenGolliver pic.twitter.com/36FCvWUbBu
“Obviously, it’s incredible,” Harris said. “Steph is the greatest shooter of all time. But, again, shooting off of the rack for a minute is not indicative of being a better shooter than Steph Curry. I don’t want anybody to get it twisted at all.”