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How high can Dwight go?
Of course, the contest lost a little luster when Robinson took a whole lotta attempts at his dunk-off jam. This year, the rules have been changed a bit to prevent the crowd from getting as restless as they did in Houston.
Now, players will have a two-minute time limit to complete their dunk. If a player hasn't completed a dunk when the 2:00 clock expires, they will have two more attempts to do so.
Like last year, each contestant will get two dunks in the first round, with the top two advancing to the finals, where they will get two more.
Let's look at this year's competitors.
GERALD GREEN - THE FAVORITE
We know the kid can get up and apparently, he's taking this very seriously. Green may be the closest thing to Vince Carter that we've seen since the 2000 contest. From reading the Boston Globe piece, it seems like he'll have the creativity. It may just be a matter of execution ... and we have high hopes.
DWIGHT HOWARD - THE BIG MAN
Amare Stoudemire made it to the finals two years ago, but his performance was more about Steve Nash's soccer skills than Amare's ability to throw it down. You figure Dwight's gotta do something related to how high he can get ... actually kissing the rim or maybe borrowing some tape from his friend Josh Smith and putting it up near the top of the backboard. He would probably benefit if the rims rattled like they did at Chicago Stadium back in 1988 (especially on the 'Nique dunks) to help us better feel the power of his throwdowns.
NATE ROBINSON - THE CHAMP
We're curious to see what Nate does differently this year. It will be hard to top the creativity of jumping over Spud. Still, when Nate gets up, it's always impressive, and like Spud, he creates some of the best photos, because of how far his feet are from the ground when he throws it down.
TYRUS THOMAS - THE ROOKIE
It's hard to guess what Thomas will come up with, as he doesn't exactly have a large dunk portfolio, having averaged just 10.6 minutes per game in 45 career appearances so far. Plus, his size and body type isn't that common where you can say, "He'll be like this guy or that guy." And he'll certainly be under some pressure after his comments to the media and subsequent fine. He can get up though, so he could certainly surprise us.