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#pounditSaturday, April 17, 2021

Zach LaVine reveals why he is no longer interested in dunk contest

Zach LaVine

The NBA Slam Dunk Contest has, at times, struggled to attract the biggest headliners in recent years. Zach LaVine may have given a hint as to why that is.

The Chicago Bulls guard, winner of back-to-back dunk contests in 2015 and 2016, said he felt his career has progressed beyond that, and has higher ambitions than competing in it once again.

You have to wonder if this mentality is pervasive among elite players. People would love to see the likes of LeBron James do the dunk contest, but for star players of that caliber, the focus is on winning championships and earning the sport’s highest individual honors. That can leave things like the dunk contest for players who aren’t quite at that level.

LaVine still likes to give tantalizing looks at what he’s capable of, but it sounds like we’ve seen the last of him in the dunk contest. That’s a shame, but his logic is understandable.

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