According to a press release via NBA.com, the field has been set for the 2013 NBA Slam Dunk Contest. Six players were selected, with three representing each conference.
More important than the inter-conference battle is the fact that the 2013 Slam Dunk Contest has presented us with a rematch for the ages.
The participants for the Western Conference are Eric Bledsoe of the Los Angeles Clippers, Jeremy Evans of the Utah Jazz and Kenneth Faried of the Denver Nuggets. Evans is the defending champion, while Bledsoe and Faried are making their first appearances.
As for the Eastern Conference, it will be Gerald Green of the Indiana Pacers, Terrence Ross of the Toronto Raptors and James White of the New York Knicks. This is where the rematch can be found.
Green versus White. The battle of two dunk masters.
Green and White went toe-to-toe in one of the most legendary slam dunk contests in basketball history. The events transpired in Europe during the 2010 Russian Cup.
For those interested in witnessing the legendary throwdown session, a link has been provided below.
As I said, legendary.
When Green and White face off for Round 2, the NBA will bear witness to what Europe is well aware of: When these two men are in a building together, special things are bound to happen.
With that being said, we're certain to be entertained regardless of their simultaneous presence. Ending up in Houston together just makes the event all the more enjoyable.
Just check the history for a glimpse at a bright dunking future.
During the legendary Russian Cup dunk dontest, the two men pulled out all of the stops. From White going between-the-legs from the free-throw line to Green's reverse alley-oop off of the bounce, we saw it all.
Chances are, these two dunk artists will do whatever it takes to top their performances on the grandest stage of them all. You know, if that's possible.
So who are they and what should we expect?
Gerald Green: An Athletic Wonder
Gerald Green may not be a household name, but he's been one of the world's top dunk artists for quite some time. The NBA first learned such a truth when he won the 2007 NBA Slam Dunk Contest.
One of Green's dunks came as he leaped over Nate Robinson—one of the other competitors in the contest.
Not only was it gutsy, but Green committed the dunk while blinding himself with his arm. Surprisingly, that wasn't even his best dunk.
Green proceeded to throwdown a powerful finish without shoes—an unreal feat that doesn't quite garner the respect it deserves.
Since then, Green has captivated fans in New Jersey and Indiana with his uncanny ability to do the unthinkable with the ball in his hands. Perhaps no dunk embodied that truth more than his windmill alley-oop from 2011-12.
That's right, a windmill alley-oop. Midgame.
There is no denying the athletic gifts that Green possesses. In fact, one might be inclined to label Green as the most explosive athlete in the NBA.
Green proved such this offseason by jumping so high that his head was above the rim. I repeat, his head was above the rim.
This is what we will witness come the NBA Slam Dunk Contest, as Green utilizes his out-of-this-world leaping ability to make the impossible, possible. With the task of exacting revenge on James White, we can expect pure and utter brilliance.
I wonder how many people he's going to jump over this year.
James White: Building the Legend
If you don't know who James White is, get familiar. When he's not fighting for minutes with the New York Knicks, he's throwing down some of the most breathtaking dunks you'll ever see.
If you believe that to be an exaggeration, check the film.
White has been innovating dunks from the free-throw line since his days as a Cincinnati Bearcat. Whether he's throwing down a windmill or going with two hands, White has never failed to take our breaths away.
His between-the-legs dunk from the charity stripe may just be his greatest feat.
As I said, unreal.
In terms of in-game NBA material, White has a limited supply. He's played just 44 games during his three-year career and averaged just 8.6 minutes per game.
Still, White can get down when it's all about the dunk contests.
White has taken over such competitions in Russia, Canada and the NBA D-League. He also threw down some monsters during the NCAA dunk contest in 2006.
So why wouldn't we believe he can do more of the same in the NBA?
When one of the world's greatest dunk rivalries continues in Houston, Texas, there will be an attempt at revenge from Gerald Green. At the same time, James White will be fighting to become more than just a name in the Knicks' rotation.
Even as lesser-known players, Green and White are going to hold down the court as if it were their own.
For those familiar with White's abilities, it will be interesting to see whether or not he returns to his "from the free-throw line" ways. Those forms of dunks will certainly excite the judges, but die-hard fans will be looking for more.
For that reason, it is fair to infer that Green will have the door opened to rise up and secure his second NBA Slam Dunk Contest crown. The question is, what will Green have in his repertoire that we haven't already seen?
Both of these men have rabid fanbases to placate. So who will step up and secure the W in the latest chapter of this dunking feud?
Until anyone proves capable of bringing him down, we're going with you, Mr. White. We welcome Green's attempts at proving us wrong.
Let the entertainment begin and the rivalry continue.
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