Bulls’ Zach LaVine says 2016 battle with Magic’s Aaron Gordon is the ‘best dunk contest ever’
Zach LaVine never lacks confidence.
The Chicago Bulls guard has emerged as one of basketball’s most polarizing players over the years, equally capable of keeping his team in the game with an array of highlight-reel dunks, 3-pointers and crossovers as he is to shoot them out of it by deviating from the offensive system and allowing as many points on the other end of the floor as he scores.
Whether or not Zach LaVine is a net positive for the Bulls is still up for debate, but what’s not is his estimable level of natural talent, which he first showed off to a national audience by winning the dunk contest in 2015.
It was one year later, though, when LaVine’s reputation as one of the best dunkers of all-time was cemented. Unfortunately, neither he nor Orlando Magic forward Aaron Gordon — LaVine’s extremely worthy opponent in 2016 — are participating in tonight’s dunk-off.
But LaVine left open the possibility of competing in future contests, while naming the show he and Gordon put on three years ago as “the best dunk contest ever.”
“We put on a show that won’t happen for a very long time,” LaVine said about the 2016 dunk contest, per Sam Smith of Bulls.com. “I think that was the best dunk contest of our generation of players since the Vince Carter one. But with both players doing it, I think that was the best dunk contest ever.”
No argument here.
Both Zach LaVine and Aaron Gordon pulled off aerial exploits the likes of which the NBA had never seen, and on multiple occasions.
They each scored two perfect 50s in the final round, leading to a tie-break scenario. However, the tie-breaker still wasn’t decided after the first round, as LaVine and Gordon both put up 50-point efforts once more.
It was LaVine who ultimately emerged victorious though, jumping from just inside the free-throw line for a between-the-legs slam on his final attempt — earning another perfect score that Gordon couldn’t quite match.