Top five NBA dunks

Dunks are the only good part of basketball. /image: Arthur Ward

Dunks are the only good part of basketball. /image: Arthur Ward

Because simply shooting the ball just isn’t good enough

Article: Charlie Macdonald – Contributor

5. Dominique Wilkins against the Boston Celtics frontcourt

Former Atlanta Hawks forward Dominique Wilkins is what Michael Jordan would have been, had Scottie Pippen not have turned out to be great. Athleticism, dunks, scoring, and little else. But my God, could ‘Nique dunk the basketball. This is just one example of his freakish ability to change a game in three seconds.

The play breaks down like this: ‘Nique misses a 17-footer at the top of the key. The ball hits the back of the rim and goes airborne. Three Celtics turn and look at the ball without boxing out–fundamentals are important, children. The Celtics all jump in unison towards the ball. Out of the sea of white Celtics home jerseys comes an outstretched arm that is 18 inches higher than all other players could dream of going. He then promptly slams the ball down and runs back to not play defence.
God bless Dominique “The Human Highlight Film” Wilkins.

4. Tom Chambers defies logic

Time to incorporate some Philosophy 150 into this list.

One of the key examples of a standard argument is as follows: all men are mortal. Socrates is a man, therefore Socrates is mortal.

I am going to adjust this for relevance to the topic of dunking.

White men can’t jump, Tom Chambers–who is pale in complexion–once got his entire head and neck over the rim during an NBA game; therefore, Tom Chambers is either not white or not a man.

 3. Dr. J in the 1977 Finals

Julius Erving–more commonly known as Dr. J–is one of the ten most important athletes in NBA history, considering his impact on how the public viewed basketball. He kept the NBA above water through the cocaine-fueled late seventies. Then, along with basketball legends Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, carried it to mainstream success in the 1980s.

Whenever you hear about Dr. J, you hear about a fantastic play that is impossible to see because those in television didn’t tape basketball games. Why would they when millions of people were already watching The Swiss Family Robinson?

There is some Dr. J footage on YouTube, however. I have chosen his dunk in the 1977 finals on Portland Trail Blazers star, Bill Walton. The camera angle is perfect as you can see Erving’s hand carry the ball six inches above the square on the backboard. Remember, this was in 1977. I’m fairly certain Air Jordan’s weren’t popular yet. Erving got the ball almost two feet above the rim using shoes that wouldn’t be fit for power walking today.

2. Shawn Kemp dunks on Alton Lister 

Six-time NBA all-star Shawn Kemp has a litter of children. You would too, however, if you could dunk like he did back in the early nineties. Kemp was so cool, he was unironically nicknamed “Reign Man”.

This particular dunk was during a playoff game in 1992. Kemp’s Seattle SuperSonics teammate Ricky Pierce dribbles into the corner and is trapped by two Warriors. Pierce passes out of the trap to Kemp at the three-point line past the elbow. Kemp, from the three-point line, takes one dribble, two steps, jumps, slows down time, and dunks the ball. On the footage, in real time, it honestly slows down, I swear. Check this one out.

1. Scottie Pippen ruins Patrick Ewing

There are two things wrong with someone who says that former Chicago Bulls member Scottie Pippen was a product of Michael Jordan. First of all, they are wrong. Second of all, refer to the first reason.

This is another dunk that appears to slow down time. What occurs here is simple; Pippen gets the ball on the wing going full speed. New York Knicks player Patrick Ewing, thinking that he has healthy knees, jumps to try and block and/or foul Pippen. Pippen dunks violently on the poor Ewing who falls back and gets a view under the shorts of the best all-around basketball player of the nineties.

After that season, Ewing was never the same. Proving once and for all that a dunk can change someone’s life.

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