NEW YORK -- Dwight Howard has another chance to impress the
slam dunk contest voters -- which this year includes fans watching
The Orlando Magic center was one of four players chosen Monday
to compete in the dunk contest at All-Star weekend, which debuts a
new format in the final round.
After the final round of dunks, fans can vote by text message or
on NBA.com to determine the winner. A panel of judges will decide
which two dunkers advance to the finals.
Howard failed to reach the finals last year in Las Vegas despite
perhaps the most impressive dunk in the competition. While catching
a high bounce pass from teammate Jameer Nelson for a right-handed
slam, Howard reached nearly to the top of the backboard to slap a
sticker bearing his face onto the glass. Nelson measured it at 12
feet, 6 inches off the ground.
Green, traded from Boston to Minnesota in the Kevin Garnett
deal, will try to become the first repeat winner since
Jason Richardson in 2002-03. Gay, in his second year with the Grizzlies,
thinks he has the dunks to stop him.
"I've got something they haven't seen before," Gay said. "If
they've seen it, I'm going to be upset."
The slam dunk contest is sponsored by Sprite.