NBA Slam Dunk Contest 2011: LA Clippers Star Blake Griffin Emerges the Champ
NBA Slam Dunk Contest 2011 Offers Plenty of Flash, Originality.
The 2011 NBA Slam Dunk Contest came and went Saturday, and it proved to be a high-flying and creative affair.
Los Angeles Clippers' star Blake Griffin, who was projected to be the winner, won the contest after jumping over a car with teammate Baron Davis sitting in the driver's seat.
In addition to the car jump, the 6'10", 250-pound rookie forward did a 360 in a first round that had TNT commentator Kevin Harlan declaring as the greatest opening round of the contest in its history.
And despite some rousing dunks by runner-up JaVale McGee and Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka, Griffin's creativity proved to be the difference-maker in a contest that continues to be more centered on originality.
Some felt Ibaka was robbed after the 7-footer dunked the ball from beyond the free throw line, probably the most impressive free-throw dunk ever done. But he also was one of many to try to replicate Michael Jordan's original dunk, and that probably cost him in terms of creativity in the contest.
As for McGee, he not only dunked two balls in two adjacent hoops in one play, he also dunked three balls at a time and did a reverse slam falling away from the hoop in the later rounds.
TNT commentator and former NBA legend Charles Barkley continued his joking ways on the set as usual.
Darryl Dawkins, partnered up with contestant DeMar DeRozan, started the night off fittingly, saying, "We just may be able to rattle somebody's balls."
I thought I had heard all the expressions out there in this world, but Dawkins sure made me realize I hadn't.
The judges for the competition were Clyde Drexler, James Worthy, Brent Barry, Dominque Wilkins and Julius Erving.
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