The NBA's 2011 slam dunk contest isn't quite as star-free as it's been in recent years, but with only one big name (Blake Griffin!) in the mix it's hard to know who to root for (just root for Blake Griffin!). So in the spirit of Spencer Hall's rootability series, which the fam has also used for everything from all of NASCAR to the New York City perspective on Seattle Seahawks games, here we go.
1. Blake Griffin! Why? Blake Griffin!
2 Kevin Garnett's face. Among the sideline array of NBA stars who make pained expressions at each really evil dunk, holding each other back while kicking their feet up as Kenny Smith repeatedly proclaims the event to be concluded, none will ever be able to top KG.
3. Javale McGee. Georgia Bulldogs head coach Mark Fox coached the Washington Wizards big man at Nevada, though he admits Travis Leslie is better. Also, NBA Southeast Division pride! Come on! It'll be like chanting "SEC!"
4. The grumpy/corrupt judge watch. No clue who's doing the judging this year -- seriously, the SB Nation newsroom just scoured the internet for clues, which will hopefully emerge at some point before the event -- but there's always one judge whose votes get really inconsistent by the end of the evening, and trying to be the first to identify the night's most crooked power figure is a fun challenge. Citizen journalism! (PRO TIP: The oldest panel member is always the best bet for Greasiest Judge.)
5. The John Wall cameo. You don't think Wall and Griffin! are right this minute practicing this masterpiece from last night's rookie game?
6. Prop bets on how many times we'll be told the slam dunk contest IS FINALLY BACK. The slam dunk contest is the Miami football of hacked-together athletic competitions.
7. The Spud Webb cameo. He's still pretty short.
8. DeMar DeRozan. Hailing from a town made famous by rap songs you loved in elementary school is great, but he's played in the Pac-10 and Canada, neither of which have inspired music good enough to get confiscated by your principal, then returned back to you at the end of the day because "I couldn't understand the words." I'm totally just reading DeMar DeRozan's Wikipedia page right now. His name is also super hard to remember how to type from sentence to sentence.
9. Drinking games based around how many times we'll be told the slam dunk contest IS FINALLY BACK. I mean, they're only going to say it once or twice. Not much of a drinking game.
10. Serge Ibaka. He's being coached by Kevin Durant, which should only annoy you, because Serge Ibaka is in the dunk contest and Kevin Durant isn't.