NBA Jam: Why LeBron James' Dunk Is Better Than Blake Griffin's

Ben RingelContributor IIIFebruary 2, 2012

MIAMI - FEBRUARY 06:  Forward LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat drives against guard Forward Blake Griffin #32 of the L.A. Clippers at American Airlines Arena on February 6, 2011 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images)
Marc Serota/Getty Images

A couple days ago, us NBA fans were treated to some of the best dunks since Vince Carter jumped over that seven foot French guy.

On Sunday night, LeBron soared over John Lucas III (which John Lucas I and II can't be too happy about) to put home a one-handed alley-oop jam.

Perhaps motivated by the King's exploits, Blake Griffin dominated the strangely-skinny Kendrick Perkins and created an incredible highlight of his own (I'm pretty sure right before he threw the ball down, Blake told UVO to play funk). 

You can find the videos of both dunks here.

Given how amazing both of these dunks were, and how close together they occurred, there is naturally a debate about which was better.  Though both high leapers have inspired me to do a lot more jump squats at the gym, I have to say that I'm on team LeBron here.  I think he wins for a couple reasons, but the main one is sort of a technicality: Blake Griffin didn't even dunk!

Yes, the elephant in the room here is that Blake never dunked the ball.  It was more of a spike, still really, really cool, but there was never any hand-on-rim action.  

This is a strange phenomenon of actually throwing the ball down into the basket that's been going around the NBA in recent years.  Prime examples of these literal "throw-downs" are Blake shattering Timofey Mozgov's dreams last season, and Dwight Howard's superman dunk at the All-Star game in 2008.  

Are some players' arms not long enough?  After a little research, I think I have dated it back to this dunk by Michael Jordan in 1996.  

In all honesty, Blake Griffin's play was really, really cool and was a powerful finish over a good post defender.  LeBron, though, jumped entirely over another human being AND finished with one hand.  It also gets some points for being an alley-oop.  That play required perfect timing, imagine if LeBron went too early: he'd just be jumping over a dude for no reason (actually, still pretty boss).

In the end, good basketball plays are like good pizza places; everyone enjoys them all, but has their own opinion on which is best.  So, which dunk was better?