One of most celebrated and anticipated events in sports history has always been the highly coveted NBA All-Stars Slam Dunk Contest. Dating back to 1984 (officially), this year’s crop of young talent did not disappoint at all. For those who attended, watched in their living rooms, neighborhood bars or best friend’s cribs, you witnessed a new era of athleticism that will forever be cemented in stans and fans alike. And Oklahoma City’s Hamidou Diallo took home the highly coveted golden trophy.
Besides their obvious talent, the participants brought a supreme level of creativity equipped with props that left a few scratching their heads but many excited at this new twist on an old classic.
The rookie standout beasted his competition outlasting Miles Bridges, (Hornets) John Collins,(Hawks) and Dennis Smith Jr.,( Knicks) displaying the best consistency dunks of the group.
Atlanta’s John Collins paid homage to the North Carolina residents Wright Brothers by soaring leaping over a small replica of a plane. New York’s Dennis Smith Jr. came with gravity-defying leaping ability over J. Cole.But it was Oklahoma City’s Hamidou Diallo proved top dog as he showcased his vertical jump by leaping over Shaquille O’Neal, literally one of the biggest stars to ever dribble the ball down the court and, to add injury to insult, he placed his entire arm in the goal, Vince Carter-style and revealed a Superman shirt underneath his Thunder jersey.
Other great moments included the Smith Jr./Dwyane Wade/Stephen Curry assisted dunk, which successfully happened after a few failed attempts and a bevy of boos from Spectrum Center audience; then changing into Fayetteville, North Carolina rapper J. Cole’s high-school jersey as Cole sat in chair, tossed the ball and finished with a powerful slam. The other participants, Bridges and Collins, were good sports but unfortunately not successful after the first round.
Diallo’s performance will go down as one of the best in NBA history, joining a fraternity of men who truly are the mvps of the weekend. Here’s to 2020!