Thursday, July 18, 2013

Top 10 Dunks of 2012-13

Each of these dunks rattled our souls and broke the time-space continuum. If you weren't near a computer set at the time of the dunk, you surely rushed to one after hearing about it on twitter. For days afterwards you couldn't keep your mind off that dunk; the ferocity, the athleticism, the ability to master gravity. These dunks all interrupted our lives at some point this past year, made us drop everything and just watch, so once again gaze in horror at the sublime slams from a season gone by.

10. Lord Byron

BJ Mullens is kind of an enigma. A white, Russell Brand-looking, seven-footer with athleticism that can shoot from outside and throw down big jams? Apparently during the lockout he went and played prison basketball, just visiting of course. And yet he plays in Charlotte so we've never really seen him. Until now. And what was LaMarcus Aldridge thinking?

9. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist on Greg Monroe

This is a beautiful dunk for it's deceptive degree of difficulty. MKG starts his gather with basically no momentum before he explodes upwards off of two feet after just one hard dribble. A great dunk plus it happened in the fourth quarter and helped swing momentum. Two Bobcats dunks so far, I guess that can be their legacy after they become the Hornets again.

8. Jeff Green on Al Jefferson

Jeff sat in his basement at home unable to play. Recovering from heart surgery that may have saved his life as well as his career he itched to be back on the court again. "I want to fly again!" he told his teammates and friends and they gave him pleasant responses; "Ya buddy, you'll get there," "stay strong," "that's the spirit!" but they didn't look him in the eye. They wanted to believe, and Jeff wanted to believe so he started a list. It was titled "Guys to Dunk On."

7. DeMar DeRozan on Timofey Mozgov

Timofey had been having nightmares. He couldn't sleep well and even when awake he had begun to cower when a bird flew overhead or when passers-by attempted a high-five. The doctors said he'd suffered physical and emotional trauma. In order to get "away from it all" the Russian decided to go to Canada where he'd have some time to recollect himself, but then, on a play like any other...

6. Paul George on Birdman

Paul woke up and slid out of the covers into embroidered slippers. After fixing his glasses, and taking his pills, one-by-one he put on his championship rings. He gently eased out of bed and looked out at the coast from the retirement house window. His family was here to visit. When he met them at the lobby he noticed his grandson had a mohawk and he laughed as he remembered the very first moment when he knew he just might be the best player in the NBA.

5. Interlude/ A Toast To Coast-To-Coast

When a player can take the ball and dominate on both ends with defensive and offensive highlight all rolled into one, it's worth a watch. Kevin Durant and Jeremy Evans both impressed with such plays this season. Fourteen steps for KD, ten for Evans but he started from further out. And I don't know if we'll ever see a player look as foolish on both ends as Turiaf looked there.

4. Harrison Barnes on Nikola Pekovic

Rookies aren't supposed to move mountains in their first season. Incoming NBA rooks carry the bags, do the dirty work, say "Yes, Sir!" and quietly put in the hard work before they get a chance to shine. Harrison decided to break the rules one day. And when there was a real mountain in front of him, he made the mountain move. Somewhere, somebody is still Bazemoring right now.

3. "The Half-Windsor"

Blake chased down the offensive player in front of him, expecting some form of Lob City to emerge to his benefit, but this one was going to be different. See, Blake could never really get a handle on Jamal and neither could anybody else on the Clippers. The only one that knew what he was going to do next was... well, nobody knew, not even Jamal himself. Jamal's game is organic and grows from the flow of the game rather than the mechanics of drills and practices. So when he decided to tie knots around the Bucks, it's not something he thought about - it just happened. Over, under, around, and through.

2. LeBron lob poster on Jason Terry

The Jet knew it was going to happen. As soon as he felt the tap of Dwyane Wade knocking the ball loose he recognized his dilemma. Caught between two point guards and a vengeful basketball King desperate not to lose he could run out of the way and avoid the poster or stand there and submit, take it like a man. It may have been destiny from that moment and some say you can't change the future even if you can see it, but whatever Jason did he knew he'd be grounded. A sad reminder of his short time in Boston.

1. DeAndre Jordan lob poster on Brandon Knight 

DeAndre paced the hallway of his house in LA. One of the greatest moments of his career had happened earlier that night and yet he didn't know quite how to feel about it. Sure his teammates loved it, the crowd loved it, and by the morning the world would love it if they didn't already. Still, DeAndre looked at his phone and the message he'd typed out. It said he was sorry, that he didn't mean to, and that he'd make it up to him. He pressed send. Somewhere, Brandon Knight's phone buzzed like it had all night and he ignored it, rolled over, felt the lump on the back of his head, and tried to forget.


Honourable mention - Kobe on Josh Smith, JaVale self-oop vs Rockets, Kawhi on Mike Miller, Griffin on Hawes hand-switch

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