124th U.S. Open

Pinehurst No. 2

No Way Jose

The Smoothie King Center serenading Jose Alvarado after shutting down CP3 is the sweetest sound since "Roundball Rock"

If you’re a basketball casual, chances are you’re just learning about Jose Alvarado this morning. The lightning quick Georgia Tech trickster went undrafted in the 2021 NBA Draft before being signed to a G-League contract by the New Orleans Pelicans. Alvarado, however, quickly made the jump to The Show, and a few weeks ago was rewarded for helping a shorthanded Pelicans squad make the playoffs with a four-year, $6.5 million contract. In Game 4 against the top-seeded Phoenix Suns Sunday night, he earned every penny of it.

Alvarado’s performance was an incredible nullification of one of the great point guards to ever play the game, holding Chris Paul to just four points in 35 minutes. It wasn’t lost on the Smoothie King faithful either, who showed their appreciation for Alvarado’s performance through the magic of song on Sunday. Sound way the hell up.

Turn your nose up at soccer all you want, but this is the kind of thing you hear in every stadium in Europe every single weekend. To hear it reverberating around an NBA arena in the playoffs for a guy who wasn’t even in the league last fall, however, is special. It’s like the final scene in an underdog movie playing out before our very eyes. It makes “Rudy! Rudy!” sound like a jingle for a used-car dealership. Most importantly, though, it puts the Devin Booker-less Suns on notice:

This series won’t be a cake walk. No way, Jose.