With only a few weeks leading up to the 2018 NBA All-Star Weekend, players are finding ways to get noticed and get invited to the annual festivities.
Just yesterday, the Boston Celtics were spotted putting up a little dunk contest in practice. It may or may not have been intended for ASW purposes. It probably was.
Over in the camp of the Celtics’ archrivals, the LA Lakers, it’s Larry Nance Jr. who’s been putting together his tryout mix for the dunk contest in February. He’s not doing it in a practice exhibition though. He’s throwing it down in actual games.
His latest audition piece was done earlier today, when he went up to throw it down over the San Antonio Spurs.
Nance Jr., whose father won the 1984 NBA Slam Dunk Contest, has been working on his portfolio over the past few years. He has been involved some of the most gory on-court crimes the league has seen over the past few years. His dunks against the Golden State Warriors would explain what I mean.
Just recently, he completely demolished Kevin Durant. KD has risen among the ranks of the best rim protectors in the league. But in this particular highlight, Larry says “Protect this!” to the former MVP.
Last season, he literally erased the face of David West. West was immobilized as he watched Nance fly through the lane (in the oh so cool Lakers retros) right by his face.
Who could forget Larry’s poster on Brook Lopez? The dunk was so vicious that Brook up and decided to ask for a trade to join the Larry in the Lakers this year (Kidding, of course.).
My only concern is that in all of those videos you just saw, Larry’s dunks all look the same. One hand extended, man beneath him, utter embarrassment. Those are the makings of a great in-game jam. I’m just not sure how his physical ability will translate in the slam dunk showcase.
But Wouldn’t it be interesting to see what he can do with that bounce and with an open lane to the hoop? He may not be as athletic as Zach LaVine or Aaron Gordon. But everyone has seen Larry fly. Now it’s time to watch him put on a show on one of the game’s biggest stages.
I do want to see Larry in the 2018 NBA Slam Dunk Contest. I just don’t want to see another Shannon Brown.
All things said, #LetLarryDunk.
Photo from Getty Images