SALT LAKE CITY — While Jazz forward Jeremy Evans will have a shot at defending his title from last year, the field features other young aerial artists who will be sure to dazzle in the competition.
Evans will compete against Kenneth Faried and Eric Bledsoe to earn a spot in the final against the Eastern Conference team, which is composed of Gerald Green of Indiana, Terrence Ross of Toronto, and James White of the Knicks.
Green returns to the slam dunk competition, five years after his famous "cupcake slam." He may have also had the best in-game slam last season, combining with MarShon Brooks for a seriously energizing dunk against Houston.
White is an interesting storyline, having come up through the ranks to gain notoriety in the basketball world. White played internationally and in the D-League before signing with the Knicks. While relatively unknown across the country, White has gained attention by sharing dunks through Twitter, @Flight8. White felt confident enough to make a bold prediction about the slam dunk competition to share his opinion on social media.
This years #spritejam this year will be the best since Vince Carter's year— James White (@Flight8) February 8, 2013
Terrence Ross is an electric rookie from Washington, who was selected by the Raptors in the first round of the draft, and has a few impressive dunks on his resume after just a few months in the league.
Bledsoe, or mini-LeBron according to his teammates, is the only point guard in the competition this year. Bledsoe could use his size to his advantage, as the judges love seeing little guys who can perform more agile dunks.
Kenneth Faried may have the best nickname of the group, and is the only contestant who starts for his team. The Manimal has built a reputation as an extremely energetic player, and feasts on transition opportunities in games. While the slam dunk competition isn't in game, it will be interesting to see what the Manimal unleashes on his competitors.
Can Jeremy "Elevator" Evans rise to the challenge? We will have to watch, vote, and see how he does.
Iona loses in overtime
Everybody loves seeing game-winning plays; unless you're on the negative side of course.
Iona, who had been sitting on a 20 game home win streak, watched Marist's Chavaughn Lewis' prayer get answered in overtime.
Lewis threw the ball up from 65 feet away, and watched it dive through the net off the back of the rim. His teammates didn't have long to celebrate, because the game wasn't finished, and poetically the Red Foxes were victors at the end of the game.
Hockey Announcer suffers laceration, keeps on announcing
Hockey players have a reputation of being tougher than practically every other professional athlete. You thought Willis Reed returning to play a few minutes on a broken leg was tough? BYU recently had a goalie finish a game with a broken jaw that he suffered in the middle of the game - and he went to the dentist a few days later because of the discomfort.
Not to be outdone by the players he works with, John Giannone of MSG was hit in the face by the puck shortly before the end of the second period. With blood streaming down his face and a member of the medical staff trying to stem the bleeding, Giannonne continued through the broadcast because, well, that's what he needed to do.
Just think about that the next time you want to sit out a game of broom hockey because your back is tight.