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The 10-man rotation, starring why we started caring about the Dunk Contest, and why we still do

Dan Devine
Ball Don't Lie
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Shawn Kemp soars during the 1991 Slam Dunk Contest. (Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images)

A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out.

C: SB Nation. Vox Media's stable of monsters celebrate the Slam Dunk Contest's past and share hopes for its present and future.

PF: Hang Time. Steve Aschburner looks back at the watershed near-boycott of the 1964 All-Star Game, talking with some of the players instrumental in the effort 50 years down the line, and considers how one unified act of defiance paved the way for pensions, multimillion-dollar average salaries and much more.

SF: Sports on Earth. Howard Megdal on Sacramento Kings point guard Isaiah Thomas, who's gone from Mr. Irrelevant to star-caliber offensive performer, and whose goal is nothing less than "the best little guy that ever played."

SG: Grantland. Jonathan Abrams goes long on the "practically impossible" story of lifelong friends Jared Sullinger and Trey Burke making it from Columbus, Ohio to the NBA together.

PG: Gothic Ginobili. Which bench players perform most like starters? Which starters perform most like bench players? What does that distinction even mean? Let Aaron McGuire take you through this fun little roster-surfing thought experiment.

6th: The Sporting News. Despite a slew of high-profile players suffering ACL tears in the relatively recent past, one doctor says there's no trend toward an increase in such injuries, while another says there might be ways that NBA teams and players could reduce the likelihood of ACL incidents going forward. Sean Deveney investigates.

7th: D.C. Sports Bog. Dan Steinberg hopes James Harden is OK after the senses-shattering foul that earned the Houston Rockets All-Star a free point and set up the game-winning layup that beat the Washington Wizards.

8th: Wall Street Journal. The New York Knicks are on pace to be the first team in NBA history to lead the league in free-throw attempts allowed and rank dead-last in free throws attempted. Chris Herring tries to figure out why. Real fun team we've got here in New York.

9th: Hardwood Paroxysm. Seerat Sohi on the philosophical and strategic underpinnings of the Portland Trail Blazers' increasingly dismal defense.

10th: Best Tickets. A whole mess of data on 2-point, 3-point and free-throw shooting, both league-wide and team-by-team, since 1980. Have at it, number-crunchers.

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Dan Devine is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at devine@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

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