Originally posted on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 2/15/13

One of the sports calendar’s great weekends is upon us. NBA All-Star Weekend tips off Friday night with the Celebrity Game, followed by the Rising Stars Challenge. Saturday’s festivities include the Shooting Stars Competition, Skill Challenge, and Three-Point Contest. But the highlight of All-Star Saturday Night—and, for some people, of the entire weekend—is the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest. The American Basketball Association introduced the Slam Dunk Contest in 1976, just months before the ABA-NBA merger. The NBA added the event to its All-Star festivities in 1984. This year’s event, the 28th of its kind, features defending champion Jeremy Evans of the Utah Jazz, Eric Bledsoe of the Los Angeles Clippers, and Kenneth Faried—the Manimal—of the Denver Nuggets representing the Western Conference. 2007 champ Gerald Green of the Indiana Pacers, Terrence Ross of the Toronto Raptors, and James “Flight” White of the New York Knicks will represent the East. (Participants this year for the first time will earn points for their respective conference.) To get you ready for the 2013 Sprite Slam Dunk Contest (Saturday night on TNT), here’s a look at the twelve best dunks (in my opinion, at least) in the event’s history: Jeremy Evans dunks two balls tossed to him by teammate Gordon Hayward to win last year’s Slam Dunk contest (Bob Donnan/US Presswire) 12. Larry Nance, 1984: The Cradle Windmill The inaugural NBA Slam Dunk Contest in 1984 featured two of the great dunkers in the game’s history: Dominique Wilkins and Julius Erving, otherwise known as Dr. J. But neither of these esteemed dunkers hoisted the trophy at the end of the evening. That honor went to Larry Nance of the Phoenix Suns, who won with this cradle windmill: Nance’s dunk is tame by today’s standards. But I appreciate the simplicity, the fact that it didn’t require props, and the fact that he nailed it on the first take (something that is rare in the second decade of the twenty-first century). Here are Nance’s other dunks from the 1984 competition: —– 11. JaVale McGee, 2011: 2 Balls, 2 Baskets We know (and love) JaVale McGee for this and this and this, but the Nuggets forward-center is also responsible for one of the most impressive dunks in basketball history. At last year’s dunk contest, while Blake Griffin was busy working out endorsement deals with Kia, McGee had an extra hoop brought into the arena. While dunking two balls at the same time is nothing new, McGee put each of the balls in a separate basket. This dunk is probably my favorite of the bunch, but I can’t place it higher than #11 for two reasons: McGee needed multiple attempts to complete the dunk, a luxury not afforded many of the other dunkers on this list; This isn’t the sort of dunk one could do on a playground. I don’t mind props, so long as the props are things that are easy to come by and could be used on most any basketball court (blindfolds, chairs, other players, etc.). An extra hoop doesn’t qualify. —– 10. Cedric Ceballos, 1992: Blindfolded The Celtics’ Dee Brown won the 1991 Dunk Contest by covering his eyes with his right arm while he was in the air:   The following year, the Suns’ Cedric Ceballos took the no-look dunk to its obvious conclusion: he wore a blindfold. And Ceballos didn’t put on the blindfold while he was under the basket or at the free-throw line. He ran across two-thirds of the court without sight. —– 9. Spud Webb, 1986: “Judge Me By My Size, Do You?” Anthony “Spud” Webb earned his keep in the NBA as a back-up point guard for the Atlanta Hawks and later put up respectable numbers as a starter for the Sacramento Kings. But he is known to history for his performance in Slam Dunk Contests. The diminutive Hawks’ guard won the 1986 competition with a series of dunks that destroyed all sorts of assumptions about physics and physiology. Webb, standing 5 feet and 7 inches, defeated teammate and favorite Dominique Wilkins with this beauty: —– 8. Nate Robinson, 2006: Over Spud Webb After Spud Webb’s win in 1986, 20 years would pass before another player under 6-feet tall won the Slam Dunk Contest. At 5-feet, 9-inches, 2006 rookie participant Nate Robinson didn’t shy away from comparisons to Webb. Instead, he honored his predecessor by using him as a prop. Webb, wearing his old Hawks jersey and standing a few feet in front of the hoop, bounced the ball. Robinson caught it as he jumped over the former champion and dunked the ball with ease. A few years later, Robinson would win the second of his three Dunk Contest trophies by jumping over Dwight Howard. While jumping over 6-11 Dwight Howard is more impressive than scaling 5-7 Spud Webb, Robinson had to push off of Howard’s back; and he didn’t have the added challenge of catching the ball in the air. —– 7. Andre Iguodala, 2006: AI to AI off the Back of the Backboard The past year has been a good one for Andre Iguodala. He made his first All-Star Game appearance, led the Sixers to a first-round upset of the top-seeded (but Derrick Rose-less) Bulls, won a gold medal as a member of the U.S. Olympic team, and he got traded to a Denver team that had won nine straight before dropping two games earlier this week. Back in 2006, when Iggy was just the other A.I., he was a participant in the 2006 Slam Dunk Contest. He didn’t win, but he may have performed the night’s most impressive dunk, with assistance from the original A.I. Iggy caught the ball off the back of the glass and finished with a reverse slam. (I’ve tried this dunk on a 7-and-a-half feet goal, and haven’t come close to pulling it off.) —– There are the first six, but just wait until you see the top 6. You may remember: The most underrated dunk of all-time. The Human Highlight Film creating human highlights. Michael Jordan “flying” as gracefully as any human ever has. Vinsanity... The post The Top 12 Dunks in Slam Dunk Contest History appeared first on Midwest Sports Fans.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

John Gillon’s winning shot helps Syracuse students in classroom

Vikings GM won’t commit to Adrian Peterson

Report: Ryan Tannehill’s knee healed, ready for OTAs

Rose complains about triangle offense as trade rumors swirl

Joel Embiid to miss next four games for 76ers

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Vince Young attempting to trademark ‘Make Vince Great Again’

Report: Mavericks get Nerlens Noel in trade with 76ers

NASCAR announces four drivers will lend their voices to 'Cars 3'

Draymond Green video game highlights his groin-shot past

Paul George trade unlikely despite interest from Lakers and Celtics

Report: David Ortiz could join Red Sox broadcast team this season

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

Box Score 2/23: Gillon's buzzer-beater blast for the win

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

Box Score 2/22: Not everyone is happy with the new intentional walk rule

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher who has recorded 10 or more shutouts in a single season

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win the MVP award

Teams, players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker