Tuesday 11th December 2018,
The Hoop Doctors

Aaron Gordon Willing to Participate in NBA’s 2018 Slam Dunk Contest

Aaron Gordon Willing to Participate in NBA’s 2018 Slam Dunk Contest

Aaron Gordon

Aaron Gordon is game for a third shot at the NBA’s slam-dunk title.

He indicated as much to The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears:

Magic forward Aaron Gordon told ESPN’s The Undefeated he would accept an invite to the 2018 NBA Slam Dunk contest if asked by the league.

Gordon’s return to the Slam Dunk Contest last year was a major disappointment. After an epic toe-to-toe showdown with Zach LaVine to the bitter end in 2016, Gordon was eliminated in the first-round of high-flying action for 2017. It was a letdown. Last year’s affair never stood to match the exceptional display we were treated to in 2016; LaVine declined to participate, and, well, the 2016 dunk-off was just too damn good. You can’t just replicate that.
Still, it’s nevertheless refreshing that Gordon is open to returning for a third crack at the title. So many players outgrow the dunk competition. They don’t want to be billed solely as a dunker or aerial specialist. The same thing happened with Blake Griffin.
Others just know they don’t have enough to gain. The buildup to the Saturday night showcase will be so high, they’ll have no chance of living up to it. Participating can only give way to disappointment for so many potential candidates. Hence why guys like LeBron James, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, et al. won’t do it. Their performances spread across social media like wild fire, and they know there’s nothing they can really do that hasn’t been done before. And if they do find something, then fail to do it, they’ll still be subject to unnecessarily negative takes. This is kind of similar to how All-Star Game participants approach defense. Why play it? You only stand to end up on the wrong side of a poster or viral clip.
That Gordon, an early-season Most Improved Player candidate, is willing to come back registers as pretty cool.

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