March 22, 2023

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The NBA is full of great dunkers. But why don’t they participate in the slamdunk contest

It’s time to save the competition.

The slam dunk contest almost hit the bottom again.

And this year we could witness his worst incarnation.

If not for Mack McClung.

A white G-League dunker aiming for pro dunkers and signing Philadelphia for a pretty picture hit three 50 dunks (only the 9th player in history) and pulled the event.

There have been no star names in the top throw competition for a long time, and in recent years it has rather served as an exhibition event for many young people: Lillard, George, Antetokounmpo and Mitchell took part here at different times. However, now everyone missed the competition: at the last moment, even Shaydon Sharp, the newcomer of Portland, who was considered the main favorite, refused.

Therefore, the competition turned out to be extremely faceless and at the same time comical: 3 out of 4 participants presented us with a chic story about an operator who confused the players, a black ball printed on a 3D printer, and a Knicks center pulling himself up on the ring for extra points.

Jericho Sims will now definitely be remembered for a long time.

It’s scary to think, but we saw the last contest of a historical level already 7 years ago, in 2016.

Then two hyperathletes, Zach Lavin and Aaron Gordon, fought for the revival of a dead competition to a victorious one – they managed to surprise when it seemed that it was no longer possible. Both participants were unrealistically gifted physically and, more importantly, carefully prepared: they did without dunks, directly repeating any previous performances, and realized everything on the first try.

The last just decent contest we saw in 2020. But he was not remembered for danks at all.

In pursuit of the title of the best shot from above, Aaron Gordon came to the competition for the third time and arranged a battle with Derrick Jones. And if in quality this contest was inferior to 2016, then in terms of intensity it was somewhere on a par: Gordon and Jones needed several additional attempts to determine the winner. It all ended in judicial lawlessness – an extra nine to the Magic forward was put by Dwyane Wade, with whom Jones managed to play in Miami. So Gordon jumped over Taco Fall and was left without a title, and everyone remembered the sly grin of the Hit legend.

Between 2016 and 2020, the contests were pretty good. The players showed an average level, but some moments were still remembered: the amplitude dunks of jet Dennis Smith, the championship of Hamidu Diallo and, finally, the performance of father and son in the person of the Nance family.

But in 2021, something suddenly broke: the event was flooded with no-names that stopped preparing.

There was no loud sign before, but the situation had reached a critical point. In 2021, there were only three participants – and one of them had already left the league a year later (you don’t even immediately remember who ). In 2022, Obi Toppin, who has never played more than 17 minutes on average in three years, and Mexican Toscano-Anderson, who played only in the Warriors system, met in the final.

And more famous characters flew past the finals who simply did not prepare: 2nd draft pick Jaylen Green came in a gold chain with an NFT video of his highlights, which he removed during the attempt, and one of the leaders of the Magic, Cole Anthony, did not find anything better except to dunk in the Timberlands. Bravo, great show.