The fact that Blake Griffin was crowned dunk king 2011 is no surprise. Throwing down monstrous jams in front of hometown fans with viewers all over the world texting in votes to choose a winner almost ensured that he’d go home with the trophy.
But, while Griffin even had a miss that brought the house down, took the “elbow” dunk to the next level by throwing the ball off the glass before throwing his entire arm through the hoop, and pretty much ended the night jumping over a car and throwing down a two hander, I’m not sure if he had the best dunk of the evening.
Personally, I’m fond of both the dunks that DeMarr DeRozan pulled off, with his first dunk really standing out to me as he caught a lob off the stanchion and then went between his legs for the finish. His second dunk where he lobbed the ball to himself and then caught the ball one handed and cupped home a crazy finish was just as good.
Meanwhile, the other contestants were throwing down monsters too. Serge Ibaka took off from the free throw line with his first dunk of the night and got head high at the rim throwing down a second.
JaVale McGee spent most of the night testing the limits of what we thought was possible by first dunking two balls on two different baskets and then trying to top that by throwing down three balls all on the same hoop. His under the rim cradle dunk was one of the best I’ve seen in a while after actually seeing it in slow motion.
And maybe that’s the real lesson from the night. All four guys had an arsenal of dunks that had the crowd ooh-ing and ah-ing all evening. Any of the four guys could have advanced to the finals and I’m sure any of them could have won considering what they showed on the big stage. The fact that Griffin is now the champ shouldn’t take anything away from what the other guys put on display for us to see.
So, what was your favorite? McGee’s double rim hammer? Maybe his up and under cradle? Griffin’s off the side of the backboard finish? On of DeRozan’s? Ibaka’s tribute to Jordan and Dr. J?After thinking more about it, I’m actually having trouble choosing myself.