2014 Slam Dunk Contest

Failure To Launch

The dunk contest was supposed to return to the form that made it famous this year. After all, some bigger names were throwing their hats in the ring, and there was a new format introduced, meant to shake things up. Instead, the contest ended up confusing everyone watching, including players and fans. The new format was a complete failure, so what's next for the dunk contest?

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Photo: Pool Photo / USA Today Sports

Reactions to 2014 Slam Dunk Contest

Kobe Bryant

I grew up with the old-school rules, when Dominique [Wilkins] and Michael [Jordan] were competing. I guess I'm kind of a purist at heart. I'd much rather watch that type of dunk contest format.

Source: CBS Sports
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John Henson

Y'all wanted a change in the dunk contest and still not happy. At this point the only way to satisfy y'all is if they put a trampoline in the floor next year.

Source: Twitter
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Jason Richardson

This year's dunk contest format might be worse than the 'wheel' back in 2002.

Source: Twitter
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John Wall

Someone sent me a link on my Twitter and said there were 27 dunks that haven't been done in the NBA dunk contest. And the first one was that one. It seemed hard, but for me, it came out to be easy. So it worked in my favor.

Source: ESPN
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Chuck Hayes

I don't know if I'm feeling that open/freestyle round in the dunk contest. I hope the league goes back to the traditional slam dunk contest format.

Source: Twitter
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Roy Hibbert

The end of this year's dunk contest was like the end of 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.' You're like huh... Is that it? Shouldn't there be more?

Source: Twitter
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Dwight Howard

People forget that every dunk has been done, basically. There's not a lot of stuff that you can really do. Even though I've got some stuff that I haven't shown, I'm old now. I don't know if I can do it. Every dunk has been done. When you get in the dunk contest and somebody might try something, everybody's like, 'I saw that four years ago.'

Source: CBS Sports
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John Wall

You've got to be creative nowadays, you know what I mean? Basically everybody's done every dunk you can do, so you've got to have some creativity to it, so that's what I'm trying to add to my flavor. There will be extra bodies involved.

Source: The Washington Post
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Vince Carter

I think it's a very athletic and wowing field this year. Of course, you can push the envelope, but just know what you can and can't do. Some people are gonna talk to you and say, 'Oh, try this and try that.' You can have a crazy imagination, and you get caught up in what you hear and what you can't do and you end up losing the dunk contest that maybe you should win.

Source: NBA.com
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Harrison Barnes

I always watched dunk contests, and personally, it was my favorite part of All-Star weekend. Just to be a part of it is a dream come true. I'm nowhere near the favorite. I'm probably the least athletic of the group.

Source: SF Gate
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Roy Hibbert

The NBA asked me to replace Paul George in the dunk contest. Said the people wanna see jump hooks not dunks.

Source: Twitter
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Ben McLemore

I'm definitely a high flyer. I can get high. I just want to show my athleticism out there on the floor and bring a lot of excitement out there. I was thinking about that [attempting a 720,] nobody has put that up. But we'll see.

Source: Celtics Blog
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Paul George

I just thought it was a move that should've been done. Get some superstar power back into the dunk contest. And I think it owed it to my fans. Give them another run, another show, and another opportunity to have fun at All-Star Weekend.

Source: Pacers.com
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Stephen A. Smith

I wanted to see some of the bigger names. If Russell Westbrook was healthy, I want to see him in it. I definitely wanted to see LeBron in it. Now that you've got all-stars and young guns, it makes me disappointed in LeBron and others who chose not to participate.

Source: ESPN First Take
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Paul George

I'm particularly pumped to be in the Slam Dunk Contest as the new format provides players with the chance to display our individual skills while battling for conference bragging rights.

Source: Indiana Pacers
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Roy Hibbert

Heard Paul George is gonna take off from the free throw line. Jump over me then do a 360 windmill at the NBA dunk contest this year.

Source: Twitter
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Ben McLemore

Appreciate all the love. Excited to be in the NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest. Let's get it.

Source: Twitter
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Charles Barkley

Not only do we have good dunkers, we have people we actually know.

Source: TNT
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Kenny Smith

John Wall will win. His speed, athleticism will help him in the dunk contest. I think he can take off from the free throw line as well.

Source: TNT
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Damian Lillard

I like stuff [that has a prior history]. When there's a story attached to it, I like all that... The dunk [contest] will be fun. I think there will be a lot of surprises. People don't really know that I can dunk.

Source: KSDK
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Chuck Hayes

I like the dunk contest field: 3 all-stars, defending champ, and two young rising players. Should be a good one.

Source: Twitter
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Photos: Kevin Jairaj / USA Today Sports, Steve Mitchell / USA Today Sports, Mark D. Smith / USA Today Sports, Pat Lovell / USA Today Sports, Mark J. Rebilas / USA Today Sports, Troy Taormina / USA Today Sports, Howard Smith / USA Today Sports, Kirby Lee / USA Today Sports, Kyle Terada / USA Today Sports, Kelley L Cox / USA Today Sports, Jerome Miron / USA Today Sports, Nelson Chenault / USA Today Sports

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