Competing against a handful of players with a height advantage at the McDonald's All-American Game's annual JamFest in Chicago, 6-foot-4, 185-pound Grayson Allen needed every bit of his athleticism to pull off the winning slam — a remarkable leap over future Duke teammate Jahlil Okafor.
For the uninformed, Okafor is the nation's No 1 senior basketball recruit and stands 6-foot-10. At least.
Allen submitted a trio of impressive dunks to start the contest -- a leaping throwdown over fellow Blue Devils recruits Tyus Jones and Justise Winslow, a through-the-legs number and a wicked windmill.
But Allen saved his best for last. He threw on a 2002 Jay Williams No. 22 Duke jersey and even surprised himself upon clearing Okafor. Asked how he pulled it off at his height, Allen told Dime Magazine, "I think it’s a little bit of creativity and a little bit of me being blessed with athletic ability. You know, maybe a little bit of craziness being thrown in there as well, having the idea to jump over Jahlil."
Okafor wanted more. "It got the fans down in Durham pretty excited, and that was our objective," he told USA TODAY. "Our Twitters were blowing up yesterday. It’s been a lot of fun. I didn’t know Grayson so well before, but he’s on my team for the McDonald’s game. The dunk was fun for him, and fun for me.
"Actually, I wanted him to jump over and me and Justise Winslow — with the alley-oop from Tyus Jones — but he thought it was crazy. He was like, ‘There’s no way I can do that.’ I thought he could."
Given his hops, he might have dunked over every former and future Blue Devil in the building. Duke fans still depressed over their first-round exit can take solace in what should be a ridiculously exciting 2015.
It wasn't like Allen walked away with the contest, either. The JamFest featured Theo Pinson's selfie dunk, Karl Towns Jr.'s blindfolded slam, Winslow's alley-oop from Jones and a series of Kelly Oubre Jr. dunks that would have easily won the NBA's weak dunk contest this year. Here are those highlights.
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