Monday, April 15 2024

Despite not playing for an NBA team, Mac McClung is the most exciting dunker in the basketball world. The young athlete won last year’s NBA Slam Dunk contest and was determined to conquer a back-to-back title. How, you might ask? Easy. Just ask Shaquille O’Neal if he can jump over him and dunk the ball backwards. 

And so it happened, he first asked the Hall of Famer to squeeze into his old high school jersey, then leaped over the seven-footer, took the ball out of his hands and slammed it in the net. To everyone’s surprise, he received five perfect scores from the judges and accomplished his mission. 

McClung achieved an average of 98.8 over his last two attempts, while rival Jaylen Brown was close by with a 97.8. “Shaq was so cool to put that high school jersey on, man, it almost made me emotional that he would do that,” the winner expressed. “When he put it on, he said, ‘You better not miss it.’ I said, ‘OK, I won’t miss it.’”

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The six-foot-two athlete, who plays for Orlando’s Osceola Magic in the G League, just became only the sixth player to ever win two or more Dunk Contests. However, he is the first to conquer the title in back-to-back attempts since Zach LaVine did it 8 years ago. 

Now the question is if McClung will try and go for a third consecutive win in 2025. “I don’t know. We’ll think about it,” the athlete shared in Indianapolis. “I’m not sure yet.” Nate Robinson is the only player to ever get crowned three times in the Slam Dunk competition. 

While the Celtics All-Star delivered special moments during the contest, the G League star needed a perfect score to top his rival. This was the moment he picked out the Lakers icon out of the crowd, in hopes that he would stand in as a prop so he could dunk over him. 

“It was like, ‘OK, you’ve really got to bring something, and I think they want us to make our dunks on the first try’, which I completely understand,” McClung recalled. “So I knew it was time to lock in for the finals.”

Fans made fun of Brown’s slam dunk attempts despite the Celtics star ranking second with 97.8 score

Despite ranking second in the Slam Dunk Contest, fans booed Jaylen Brown when he dunked over a sitting Kai Cenat during this All-Star Weekend. Shortly after, social media was flooded with reactions making fun of the Boston superstar, as people were more confused than impressed.

During the broadcast, even Shaquille joked about it, saying that the obstacle “is smaller than Kevin Hart.” Take a look at the scenes during this Saturday’s dunk competition in Indianapolis and judge it yourselves.

Another winner of the night was Bucks star Damian Lillard, who impressed all by defending his three-point contest title with 26 points in the final round. The former Portland guard defeated Trae Young and Karl-Anthony Towns, who both tallied 24 points in the last stage. 

“I think last year it was a lower score to win. Like, nobody really shot the ball great,” Dame shared. “This one, I felt like everybody shot at a pretty high clip in the first round, in the tiebreaking round and the final round. Everyone shot well, so this one was, I’d say, a little more fun.”

Source: Basketball Insider


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