Sure, Zach LaVine will not be able to defend his title this year, but don’t think that the 2017 Slam Dunk contest isn’t going to be dank. Let’s take a brief look at the participants below.
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2017 NBA Slam Dunk Contest Preview
Aaron Gordon (-220)
We know what Mr. Gordon is capable of doing while suspended in midair. We’ve seen it last year, when he took the fight right down the throat of Zach LaVine, who might have thought of dunking off the half-court line just to beat Gordon in the finals. Gordon displayed the perfect mix of creativity and insane athleticism in last year’s contest and without LaVine to defend his title this time around, Gordon appears to have an easier road to the slam dunk championship that he fell short of winning in 2016.
Derrick Jones Jr. (+150)
Thanks to the omnipotent power of the internet, you don’t have to be mad hoop addict to know who this Derick Jones Jr. dude is. Jones is an undrafted rookie averaging a mere 3.3 minutes of action for the Phoenix Suns. That is not stopping his YouTube popularity from skyrocketing, though, especially after it was announced that he’d become part of the slam dunk contest.
Most of Jones’ thundering dunks caught on tape he did while playing in the D-League last fall and during that one-year stay in UNLV. Jones could straight out fly and once you’ve seen his highlights, you’d wonder whether Jones was bitten by a kangaroo before.
Glenn Robinson III (+700)
What do we know about Glenn Robinson III? Well, for one, he’s the son of The Big Dog. He was drafted in the second-round pick of the 2014 draft. He is currently playing for the Indiana Pacers. And oh, he was the author of a nasty, disrespectful dunk over Marquese Chriss, who probably questioned his existence after Robinson disgraced him midair. See the dunk below.
DeAndre Jordan (+1,000)
It’s nice to see a Jordan participate in the slam dunk contest again. But don’t expect DeAndre Jordan to leap off the free throw line because he’s not shaped in the same mold of a Shawn Kemp or a Blake Griffin. Big men have historically struggled to impress the contest’s judges. Just look at how Andrew Drummond and Chris Andersen soiled their pants in front of people in previous editions of the event.
Jordan’s dunk game is built on power that produces vicious visuals of him slaying smaller human beings in the air, as what Brandon Knight would testify, but whether that would translate well in the slam dunk contest, that we still have to see.
Derrick Jones Jr, (+150) brings the house down and his dunk creds up, in a mild upset win over Aaron Gordon in the finals.
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