DeMar DeRozan Selected For Sprite Slam Dunk Contest At NBA All-Star Weekend
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January 20, 2011
NEW YORK -- The Toronto Raptors announced Thursday that guard DeMar DeRozan has been selected to participate in the 2011 Sprite Slam Dunk contest at NBA All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles. DeRozan will replace Milwaukee’s Brandon Jennings who withdrew due to injury. The contest will take place at STAPLES Center on Saturday, February 19.
As a rookie DeRozan participated in last year’s Sprite Slam Dunk contest, finishing second to New York’s Nate Robinson and recorded the evening’s only perfect score of 50 for his first-round dunk. He qualified for the contest by defeating Los Angeles Clippers guard Eric Gordon in the Sprite Dunk-In held during halftime of the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam.
DeRozan currently ranks second on the team averaging 15.0 points per game and leads all sophomore players during the month of January averaging 18.8 points. The Compton, California native was selected ninth overall in the 2009 NBA Draft after one season at USC.
Also participating in the Sprite Slam Dunk are Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers), Serge Ibaka (Oklahoma City) and JaVale McGee (Washington). Each participant will be matched up with a dunk coach who will work with his respective player to create and practice some of the electrifying dunks that will take place during the event in Los Angeles. NBA Legend Darryl Dawkins, who was to help Jennings prepare for the contest, will coach DeRozan.
The Sprite Slam Dunk is part of NBA All-Star 2011, which also includes the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam, NBA All-Star Saturday Night presented by State Farm featuring the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest, Haier Shooting Stars and Taco Bell Skills Challenge; NBA All-Star Jam Session presented by adidas; and the 60th NBA All-Star Game.