The world outside is scary right now, so I suggest we spend this entire Friday reliving the happier moments of this year, like the time DeAndre Jordan baptized Brandon Knight against his will and that other time when Blake Griffin dunked all stupid when he didn’t have to.
The NBA playoffs start tomorrow, so the NBA’s YouTube channel posted their picks for the top 10 dunks of the year. A lot of these have appeared in the Wednesday Dunk Battle, so it’s a pleasant trip down a brutal memory lane. Remember when LeBron James made Jason Terry feel like a useless asshole? Remember when Kobe remembered how good he can be and dunked on the entire Brooklyn Nets line-up? Good times.
The NBA’s top 10 is after the jump, followed by the ACTUAL best dunk of the year.
While last week’s Beef Thursdays column featured actual beef, in the sense that athletes were trying to rip each other’s heads off en route to a horrific international incident that could have only been prevented by the United Nations or James Bond, this week’s edition is more of an imposed sense of rivalry. Namely, we thought that Los Angeles Clippers center DeAndre Jordan became the clear frontrunner for Dunk of the Year last week, but then LeBron James popped up this week and said, “Hold on just one second.”
Funny how I’ve always thought we’d never be able to settle a Jordan-James debate.
Jordan and the Clippers raised the bar for humiliating opponents last week, when the 6’11” dunk machine threw down over an incredibly mismatched Brandon Knight. The result was two point for Jordan and a meeting with the floor for Knight.
Under Armour was quick to jump on the DeAndre Jordan’s Dunk Was Memorable bandwagon, have produced a series of animated t-shirts and are asking fans to recreate Jordan’s signature “eesh” face for an Instagram contest:
Want to win a trip to LA for you and a friend to meet DeAndre Jordan? Upload your best #DeAndreDunkFace to Instagram to enter for your chance to win.
The rules are intensely thorough, and I invite you to read them all for gems like “photo must not contain images of athletes in uniform,” and the suspiciously let-my-nephew-win-this fine print reading “sponsor reserves the right to contact competitors for additional information prior to selecting the winner.”
If you’re entering this, be sure to post your dunk face in the comments below.
Edit: I got these links together on Monday afternoon and set this to post for Tuesday morning thinking, “oh, I’m probably the only person who cares about Jim Ross calling DeAndre Jordan’s dunk on Brandon Knight, it’ll be fine to share in the AM.” Then Deadspin shared it.
So hey, if you haven’t heard the Jim Ross King Of The Ring ’98 call set to the monster mother of all posterizations, check it out. If you saw it last night, watch it again. It’s still really, really great.
By now you’ve probably seen it, DeAndre Jordan’s life-altering dunk on Brandon Knight in last night’s ridiculous 129-97 Los Angeles Clippers victory over the Detroit Pistons. Blake Griffin has called it the “Dunk of the Year” and Twitter instantly turned it into the 2013 version of the Dominique Wilkins poster I once had hanging in my bedroom as a kid. Poor Brandon Knight, just minding his own business as he traveled into the paint against one of the NBA’s most aggressive dunkers. Knight can go ahead and take a seat next to John Lucas now, because his career won’t ever be the same.
That’s not hyperbole. Dunks like this change lives, because no matter how well Knight performs the rest of this season or every season beyond until he retires, we’re always going to hear his name and laugh – “You mean the guy that DeAndre Jordan killed?” As fast as we move from meme to meme and GIF to GIF in this Internet era, we never forget. Just like Manny Pacquiao before him, Brandon Knight was dragged through the streets of Meme City last night after that “Just another day at the office” dunk by Jordan.
The Wednesday Dunk Battle is your most important weekly stop as a With Leather reader. Your viewing of a collection of dunks and decision regarding which dunk was the most Slam Dunk is important not only for editor-to-patron relations, but for SCIENCE, because deciding which dunks are best is science’s primary goal.
Last week’s winner (in a landslide) was Kobe Bryant. This week’s showdown features Dwyane Wade, Blake Griffin, a jumble of consonants and what may or may not be Teenage Gronkowski back for dunking glory.
This week’s contestants:
1. It says “DeMar DeRozan dunks on Timofey Mozgov” but I refuse to believe that those are peoples’ names 2. Back-to-back dunks from DeAndre Jordan and Blake Griffin 3. Dwyane Wade’s “showtime reverse” 4. Trevor Wages from the COLORADO SCHOOL OF MINES (~!) shatters the backboard
Please consult the dunk clips and make your decision below.