Magic Johnson offers $1 million if LeBron James participates in dunk contest
LeBron James has been teasing NBA fans about appearing in the Slam Dunk Contest ever since entering the league in 2003, but he has yet to participate. He even said in December that he was too old for it. But after a recent string of dominating dunks LeBron threw down in pregame warmups went viral, the hunger for James to participate has grown. Now, Magic Johnson is getting in on the act with an offer that would be difficult to decline.
During ESPN’s pregame show Friday, Magic said he would put up $1 million for LeBron to do the dunk contest. He then somewhat changed his stance by offering $1 million to the winner if LeBron participates, making the offer more of a purse than appearance fee for King James.
“Please, LeBron, get in the dunk contest. I’m going to put up a million dollars,” Johnson said on ESPN’s Kia NBA Countdown. “A million dollars from Magic to LeBron. Please get in the dunk contest. I go every year. I want to see you out there. A million to the winner.”
At halftime, ESPN’s Bill Simmons even said he would throw in $200,000 to the offer, though it seemed like he might have been joking.
Now it is all on James, assuming Magic sticks to his word. LeBron said last year that he would do the dunk contest if they paid $1 million, so he has no excuse now. The dunk contest currently pays $100,000 to the winner and $50,000 to the runner up.
Here is the dunk LeBron did in pregame warmups over the weekend to get everyone excited, and below is a video of LeBron throwing down some jams before Friday’s home game against the Memphis Grizzlies:
Does anyone really think he would lose throwing down dunks like that?