Tuesday , Dec , 30 , 2008 Oly Sandor

Challenging Dwight Howard: why Michael Beasley, O.J. Mayo, and Anthony Randolph should be on Slam Dunk ballot

The NBA’s faithful will select the final participant by going on-line and voting for Russell Westbrook, Rudy Fernandez, or Joe Alexander. Westbrook, Fernandez, and Alexander are fine candidates. But the NBA likes to use the event to promote young players, so why not include all emerging talent on the voting ballet? For whatever reason, the NBA didn’t include these options …


Challenging Dwight Howard: why Michael Beasley, O.J. Mayo, and Anthony Randolph should be on Slam Dunk ballot

Last year, Dwight Howard brought the Slam Dunk Contest back. Recently, the All-Star Weekend’s flagship event had fallen off because new school contestants lacked the showmanship of their more senior peers.

After all, nobody could touch the aerial antics of Michael Jordan, Dominique Wilkins, Dee Brown, and Kenny ‘Sky’ Walker.

Until Howard.

Superman wowed the masses, took home the winner’s cheque, and restored the event to its former glory. All that was missing was Lois Lane.

With the 2008-09 All-Star Weekend in Phoenix fast approaching, hoop heads are anticipating another exciting Slam Dunk Contest. Howard will defend his title. The dynamic Nate Robinson and high-flying Rudy Gay are also competing.

For the first time ever, fan voting decides the fourth contestant. The NBA’s faithful will select the final participant by going on-line and voting for either Russell Westbrook, Rudy Fernandez, or Joe Alexander.  The player with the most votes wins the fourth spot.

Westbrook, Fernandez, and Alexander are great candidates. But the NBA claims All-Star Weekend is for the fans and likes to use the Slam Dunk contest to promote young players, so why not put more emerging talent on the voting ballot? For whatever reason, the NBA didn’t include these options …

Michael Beasley …

Why fans can’t vote for him: A high-flying, left-hander, Beasley, fair or not, has a bad boy reputation. Miami’s young forward will play in the rookie-sophomore game, but the off-court distractions likely influenced Commissioner Stern to take a pass.

O.J. Mayo …

 

Why fans can’t vote for him: Memphis already has Gay participating, so this worked against Mayo. Still, back in their Raptor days, Vince Carter and Tracy McGrady both competed in the 2000 competition. You remember this, right?

Anthony Randolph …

 

Why fans can’t vote for him: No clue. Sure, the Warriors are a mess, but their loyal fans deserve to have the exciting Randolph included in the voting.

Bottom Line: The NBA has always argued that All-Star Weekend is for the fans. If so, open up voting for Saturday’s jam fest. Fans can vote for dozens of players to start in Sunday’s All-Star game, so why can’t they have more than three voting options for the fourth spot in the Slam Dunk Contest?

Who would you like to see in the Slam Dunk Contest? Beasley? Mayo? Randolph? Or somebody else? And should the NBA have provided more voting options for fans? Get at us in the comment box and come back to HoopsVibe The Blog for more NBA tiditbits. Photo courtesy of thedanger23.