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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Paul George: Dunk Contest was a ‘joke’

For the sake of this post, we’re going to ask you to recall Saturday’s disappointing Slam Dunk Contest, as much as we know it might pain you. In case you already expunged the event from your memory, the format of this year’s contest received a makeover with the elimination of judges for the first time and full incorporation of fans’ votes to determine the results. But one competitor in the Saturday’s showing, Pacers guard Paul George, came out Monday deriding the new format.

“(Not to) take nothing away from the dunk contest, (but) it was a joke,” George said, according to the Indianapolis Star. “I guess whoever had the biggest celebrity involved in their dunk was going to be the winner. I guess I should have tried to reach out to some people.”

Jazz forward Jeremy Evans was the winner of the event. For one of his dunks, Evans donned a Karl Malone jersey and dunked over comedian Kevin Hart, who was dressed as a mailman.

George’s dunks included one where he jumped over teammates Roy Hibbert (who stands at 7-foot-2) and Dahntay Jones, a Tron-themed dunk during which he donned a glow-in-the-dark uniform and shoes, and a third that included him posting a Larry Bird sticker on the backboard.

“If you leave it up to fans, they probably wouldn’t have known who Larry was. I think I was destined to lose it,” George added.

George’s bitterness could also be attributed to the fact that Hart stands around two feet shorter than Hibbert.

I hate to burst George’s bubble, but Evans won because he was the least dreadful of the four competitors. Evans’ two-ball alley-oop slam was perhaps the most creative and impressive of all the dunks that night. Maybe if those of us watching on TV could actually see George’s glow-in-the-dark dunk, things could have turned out differently.

But as far as the event being a joke, George isn’t wrong.  Once TNT started overcompensating for the unsung field by pimping out its dopey “dunk intensity meter,” you already could sense the night was going to be a train wreck.

Photo Credit: Bob Donnan-US PRESSWIRE

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