"Leaving people hanging" on handshakes is becoming a regular occurrence at the end of NBA games, but Thunder center Steven Adams has reached a simple solution to combat this inconsiderate scourge: just shake your own hand.
Last year, Heat forward LeBron James famously left a fan in Denver hanging. Then, Warriors guard/forward Andre Iguodala didn't complete a pair of handshakes with fans after knocking down a game-winner. That brings us to Thursday night, which saw a little player-on-player handshake dissing that ended in hysterical fashion.
In the closing seconds of Oklahoma City's 105-91 home victory, Adams, a rookie who hails from New Zealand, attempted to offer a "good game" shake to Clippers center Byron Mullens. The fifth-year reserve big man intentionally ignored Adams' advances, even as Adams persisted. As the clock ticked down, Adams designed to save his right hand, which was by this point danging in the air without a partner, by using his left hand to complete a quick handshake. He then walked away from Mullens to midcourt where he exchanged a few words and a high-five with teammate Jeremy Lamb.
Adams' improvisation is a little tricky to see in the video above so here's a GIF version for a clearer look.
Here's another super-zoomed version of Adams' quick-thinking save.
Perhaps Mullens was subjecting Adams to a little rookie hazing or, more likely, he was simply doing his part to hold up the bad blood that's developed between these two Western Conference powers. A scrum broke out between the Clippers and Thunder last week which eventually led to Matt Barnes' ejection and Serge Ibaka hit Blake Griffin with a low blow last year.
None of those previous incidents tops the hilarity of the Adams/Mullens non-handshake though. Both teams should go ahead and pin this one straight to their bulletin boards.
Adams finished with six points (on 2-for-5 shooting) and seven rebounds in 24 minutes. Mullens didn't score a point or grab a rebound in five minutes. He missed the only shot he took.