Aaron Gordon has to admit defeat again in the Dunk Contest – although he scores five 50-point dunks; Derrick Jones Jr. wins. While Buddy Hield puts on the triple crown with his last throw, Bam Adebayo plays himself to the winner of the Skills Challenge
“That’s it. I think I should have won two trophies already.” Aaron Gordon seems to have had enough of the slam-dunk contest for now. The high-flyer of the Orlando Magic had to admit defeat again in this year’s Chicago edition – although he hit five dunks with the full score of 50.
In the second jump-off in the final against Miami’s Derrick Jones Jr., Gordon received only 47 points, even though he stuffed over the 2.26-meter giant tacko drop; Jones Jr. received 48 points for his windmill from – in front of – the free-throw line.
Gordon also impressed with a 360-degree dunk when he fished the ball from the edge of the board with one hand. Jones Jr. shone with a dunk through his legs over the passer who hit the ball to the board.
Gordon also lost out in a memorable 2016 slam-dunk contest, when he also beat Zach LaVine in the second jump-off.
Dwight Howard and Pat Connaughton were eliminated in the semi-finals. Howard honored Kobe Bryant in a Superman Dunk, but the slam didn’t come close to Howard’s original. Connaughton alluded to “White Men Can’t Jump” and presented himself with strong coordination when he jumped over teammate Giannis Antetokounmpo, picked up the ball over his head and touched the ball on the board before the dunk
Buddy Hield: with the last throw to the king of three
Buddy Hield put the triple crown on himself with the last hit litter at the triple contest. The money-ball for two points fell, and the Kings Wing player stood out with 27 points Suns Guard Devin Booker with 26 points. Seven of his last eight threesomes hit Hield in the final round. Wizards winger Davis Bertans finished third with 22 points.
In the three-way contest, there were two additional throws, each scoring three points on the wing from an even greater distance, but the time was increased by ten seconds to 1:10 minutes.
In the first round, Booker was the only player to hit both balls for three points. While Hield used his last six shots – all money balls – Bertans hit seven shots in a row to qualify for the final.