The 5 Best in-Game NBA Dunks of All Time

Christopher JohnsonContributor IIINovember 19, 2011

The 5 Best in-Game NBA Dunks of All Time

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    The dunk is one of the most impressive plays in sports. 

    The art of the throwdown cannot be mastered by all; it is a supreme display of athletic ability. A mix of art, leaping ability, and humiliation for the poor fool on the losing end of the big jam.

    Although dunks in competitions and All-star games are impressive to watch, a quality in-game throwdown is much more significant. My list is limited to those dunks that happen during NBA games.

Honorable Mention

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    The only reason this one isn't No. 1 is because it didn't happen during an NBA game. 

5. Tom Chambers on Mark Jackson

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    Tom Chambers uses current Golden State Warriors head coach Mark Jackson as a springboard en route to a beautiful two-handed slam.

    The best part about this dunk is how Chambers inexplicably keeps rising; it's almost as if his contact with Jackson propelled him to the rim.

4. Baron Davis on Andrei Kirilenko

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    Watch the reactions of Baron's teammates after this dunk. More importantly, listen to the reaction of the fans.

    This is the year in which Golden State upset the No. 1-seeded Dallas Mavericks. They would go on to lose this series, but this play remains a distinct memory.

    Davis completely posterizes one of the NBA's best shotblockers in Andre Kirilenko. But what makes this monster slam is the authority with which Baron throws it down.

3. LeBron James on Kevin Garnett

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    I get goosebumps every time I watch this. LeBron sealed the victory in Game 4 of the 2008 Eastern Conference semifinals with this play.

    Like Baron Davis, LeBron's dunk is over one of the game's best defensive players. Kevin Garnett takes pride in defensing the rim, and LeBron just flat out embarrassed him on this play.

    What makes this dunk worthy of the No. 3 spot is Kevin Harlan's call: "LeBron James, with no regard for human life." This is an apt description for such a violent throwdown.

    Sorry about this, Cleveland fans.

2. Michael Jordan on Patrick Ewing

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    Isn't it funny how Mark Jackson once again finds himself on the wrong end of another spectacular dunk. We all know MJ is probably the greatest dunker of all time, but even this was incredible for his airness.

    Trapped in a corner by two defenders, Jordan faced an extremely difficult situation. Most players would have turned it over there, or even called a timeout.

    But Jordan miraculously spins out of the double team and throws it down over a very respected defensive player in Patrick Ewing, silencing a raucous MSG crowd.

    Jordan has so many great dunks, I just thought this was the most significant.

1. Dr. J over Michael Cooper

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    In my opinion, the greatest dunker of all time. Dr. J basically invented the art of the throwdown.

    This play is the pinnacle of his dunking creativity. The way Erving cups the ball with one hand and tomahawks it over an opposing defender while on a fast break is just mind-boggling to me.

    I'm not sure if this will ever be surpassed as the greatest in-game NBA dunk of all time.