This year's 2012 NBA Slam Dunk Contest may not feature L.A. Clippers talent Blake Griffin defending his 2011 title, yet despite the setback, it has every bit of the makings to be a contest of epic proportions.
This year, the Indiana Pacers' Paul George and Minnesota Timberwolves rookie Derrick Williams will be battling it out to take home the NBA Dunk Contest crown. The two have taken this season by storm, putting up solid numbers for their teams.
George is putting up 12.1 points and 5.5 rebounds per game while playing 31 minutes per game.
George has also featured a plethora of dunk contest-worthy slams on the year, as there is no shortage of the George dunks on SportsCenter's Top 10.
Paul George's recent double-pump reverse against the New Jersey Nets was one of the more jaw-dropping dunks of the season.
Williams has averaged just over seven points in just 18 minutes per contest for the Timberwolves on the year. He has also boasted some of the more impressive dunks of the 2011-2012 NBA season.
Considering the field has no superstars or former dunk contest winners, it will be a significantly more interesting showdown.
There are two things that are now known for certain: There will be a new dunk contest champion and fan-bias will not be as heavy of an influence on determining who is the 2012 Slam Dunk champion.
Inevitably, when some of the bigger names in basketball like a Blake Griffin, Nate Robinson or Dwight Howard are in the dunk contest, there will be a tendency for fans to side with these players.
Yet with four less-popular players, including rim-rockers George and Williams, it will be a more suspenseful, exciting dunk contest, as fans are not as inclined to have a bias.
Paul and George should find themselves battling it out when it's all said and done, as these are the two best of the field as well as two of the more underrated dunkers in basketball.