Jay C. Brandriet
The slam dunk contest was fresh and spectacular.
The event got in its own way and missed out on a unique opportunity.
The dunk has come along way. Youtube is proof enough. There are jams being thrown down we wouldn’t have dreamed of twenty years ago.
The challenge is coming up with something new.
Aaron Gordon and Derrick Jones Jr. put on a show.
They had people holding their faces with both hands.
Sometimes when combined greatness hits that level, you have to read the room.
The room and the moment both said, stop this now! It’s over! You can’t ask these men to do more. Don’t try and do better than perfect. IT’S A TIE!
The validation came right away when Kenny Smith, Reggie Miller, and Kevin Harlan knew we had to throw in the towel.
Dwyane Wade was ready to walk away from the judges table.
Gordon took his shoes off. His prerogative was, five straight 50 point scores was enough. He should be the champ.
They both should have taken off their kicks.
The NBA stuck to the natural goal of wanting only one to survive.
They made them go on.
Jones ended up being named the winner.
Much of the audience got caught up in Gordon jumping over 7’5″ Tacko Fall.
The story became Aaron Gordon got wronged for the second time in his career.
What complicates things is celebrity judges who are not set up to succeed. They get to use the numbers one through ten with no decimal points?
We have seen sweet duels before in the dunk contest.
This was creating a new standard.
That trophy was meant to be shared.
It was the only time a tie had a cool factor.
The real winner should have been that moment.
Aaron Gordon didn’t get robbed, we all did.
Jay C. Brandriet