September 11, 2009
OK, we know the first decade of the 21st century doesn't really end until 2011. We think. But we also know there have been 10 full NBA seasons played since the phrase "Y2K" was on all of our lips (1999-2000), and here at Ball Don't Lie we've decided to use this as an offseason excuse to rank some of the best and not-so-brightest of the 10 campaigns in question. The result? Why, top 10 lists!
There is absolutely no rhyme or reason to this list.
We merely ranked the 10 finest dunkers we saw over the last 10 years, based on how much they made us squeal and/or mug in our own living room(s) over the last decade. No stats, no documentation besides a sordid past and lots of YouTube'ness, no way to prove that I'm wrong or right.
I'm right, though. You'll see. Click the jump for the 10 finest dunkers of the last decade.
White played a total of 10 games in the NBA over the course of this decade, long enough to grab himself a fancy sombrero as a member of the 2007 San Antonio Spurs. That's enough, you know. Don't believe me? Click.
A bit of an airhead but, well, we kind of like that. Lovely windmills and all sorts of fantastic two-hand flushes for Smith, who probably couldn't provide you with the full names of more than two of his assistant coaches, but can dunk from the free-throw line with two hands.
He may not go for it as much as he used to, but Amar'e will dunk on you. He'll also give you a sound showing in the 2005 dunk contest, he'll give up 42 points to Al Jefferson(notes), and he'll still dunk on you. Good to know.
Absolutely and utterly robbed in the 2006 dunk contest. We love Nate Robinson(notes), he nearly made this list, but AI blows him out of the water overall. Too much hops, too much range, too many moves.
James may have the biggest vertical in the NBA, but he doesn't pull off a lot of shocking work in the air. Doesn't really need to, if we're honest, as his ability to sky and essentially have his entire forearm and elbow above the rim as the ball goes down constantly leaves us shaking our heads, and his opponents muttering.
He eats babies, you know. Good god, look at that picture! Look at the confusion in Hedo Turkoglu's(notes) face! Look at how gobsmacked Rafer Alston(notes) is! Look at the sheer terror and fear in Dwight Howard's(notes) mug!
Quite creative, willing to pull off full 360s in game action, and sort of a mini-Dominique Wilkins. That's good enough for us.
2. Dwight Howard
Yeah, he gets his head above the rim. A good chunk of the time, actually. He's the only guy on this list, that I can recall, who has actually beat a team on a last-second shot that was actually drawn up for him to dunk. That doesn't happen very often.
Well, he did that to Frederic Weis. That's enough for a top five inclusion.
Carter goes at people. He ticks us off, but he still goes at people. Always has.
Give him a good knee to the thigh, bump him in the shoulder, give his ankle a tweak, remind him of Evil Knievel's crash at Caesar's Palace, and he'll lay on the floor for eight minutes, while teammates indifferent crowd around him, and the television station carrying the game is forced to go to a commercial. It's annoying as hell.
Don't provide him with a supporting cast he feels accurate? If he's in Toronto, he'll sulk and loaf. In New Jersey, he'll play strong and inspired. Go figure. It's annoying as hell.
Vince Carter is annoying as hell. On that, we can all agree.
But he can dunk. And he's gotten everyone.
Not only is he the best dunker of the last decade, he's the best of all time. And that's someone with Michael Jordan bedsheets talking.
It's annoying as hell, but VC can throw down. Bow down.
Questions? Comments? Furious and righteous anger at a world, not to mention top 10 list, gone wrong? Swing by later today at about 2 p.m. Eastern for a BDL mini-chat regarding this very list.