Disappointed for many reasons. The most mentioned will be witnessing James White lose the NBA dunk contest after waiting almost a decade to see him finally compete. James was and will always be known as one of the greatest dunkers ever but losing the McDonalds High School, NCAA and NBA dunk contest doesn’t look great on a resume of an all-time great.
Disappointed that Gerald Green had a disappointing show that caused more head scratching than his dunking in socks dunk from a few years back.
Disappointed that the first round was so long and boring that it took away from the excitement of the exceptional dunks in the final round between Terrence Ross and last year’s dunk champion Jeremy Evans.
Most of all, i’m disappointed that the dunk contest was just so bad and had the feeling of the late 90s right before the NBA cancelled it. The NBA continues to come up with twists and new rules (wheel anybody) thinking it will help bring more excitement to a contest that showcases players that the average sports fan doesn’t know but what they end up doing is exactly what every shooting coach that worked with Shaq did – made it worst!
My favorite format was the original format in the 80’s – 3 dunks in the first round, 3 dunks in the semis and 3 dunks in the finals..and you didn’t get minutes of attempts either. They kept it moving by guys dunking, making, missing and moving on. It also gave the announcers more to talk about as a new player was up every minute. That constant make, miss, movement made the contests feel more lively and fast as opposed to that c’mon you can make it feeling we get now.
I’m even ok with the 1993 format change when they just took the two highest scores from the 3 dunks in the first round. We need 3 dunks in the first round. The problem with 2 is that if you miss one dunk you are basically out no matter what you do on your other dunk. This also causes players to either play it too safe or go for broke too early as opposed to warming the crowd up.
Then the dunk contest went to a timed routine where you dunked for 90 seconds (but not to rap music which was banned) and after Kobe won it in a snoozer that saw Darvin Ham robbed the NBA cancelled the event. It made it’s return in 2000 with arguably the best dunk contest of all time with, surprise, the best format of 3 dunks in the first round. Since then we have had highs and lows (wheel again) that had Magic Johnson saying every year that the “dunk contest was back” but it wasn’t until the players started using props. Just like every good viral video series, the props and production got bigger and better until it just made a lot of original fans sick to their stomach.
Here we are tonight in 2013 with good but relatively unknown dunkers and only 2 dunks in the first round. The contest also had some highs and lows but the average fan didn’t care for it. Bottom line is the average fan (and Charles Barkley) either wants to see great players doing dunks or unknown players doing amazing dunks. They don’t want a middle ground with non All-Stars attempting dunks that “amateur dunkers” have perfected.
Now let’s look at some of the dunks tonight and what they were trying to do as performed by “amateurs.”
JAMES WHITE FREE THROW LINE DUNK
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We have seen James jump from behind the free throw line with 1 hand and do a 2 hand, windmill and even a between the legs dunk from the free throw line but after missing the 1 hand attempt he went with the two hands but took off a little in front of the line and ended up with a 45.
Here’s what he wanted to do:
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GERALD GREEN WITH THE EARL MANIGAULT DOUBLE DUNK
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Legend has it Earl “The Goat” Manigault could a double dunk and most of us didn’t believe it was possible. After minutes of attempts, Green pulled it off when it didn’t count and for some reason it just didn’t look that exciting. Not even as exciting as when Don Cheadle (fake) did it in the movie Rebound (go to the 2 minute mark)
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TERRENCE ROSS BEHIND THE BACK 360 DUNK
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Ross pulled it off but due the amount of attempts, it just didn’t have the same impact as when Ryan “Special FX” Williams does it.
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JEREMY EVANS REVERSE OVER MARK EATON
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When I saw Utah’s Evans bring out 7’4 Utah Jazz legend Mark Eaton out I got excited but then he had Eaton sit which didn’t make a lot of sense. After numerous tries he pulled off the reverse but I’ve seen Myree “Reemix” Bowden and Justin “Jus Fly” Darlington (44 second mark) pull off this dunk a hundred times and every one of them has been better.
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ROSS 360 VINSANITY REMIX OFF THE SIDE OF THE BACKBOARD
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I have no complaints about this underrated dunk. It was original and was well executed. The reason why I’m listing is because I keep hearing people say there’s no new (non gimmick) dunks left but if you watch the following video you will see there’s plenty of dunks left do…that just includes throwing it off the side of the backboard. Enjoy
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If you haven’t seen the dunk contest and for some reason want to watch the whole event in it’s entirety – here you go.
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