The NBA Slam Dunk Contest has been in a slow, steady decline since its Zach LaVine-Aaron Gordon peak in 2016, but Mac McClung, an unheralded savior all the way from the Philadelphia 76ers’ G-League affiliate Delaware Blue Coats, has breathed new life into one of the most-awaited competitions during the All-Star weekend. And it doesn’t seem like his bag of tricks has run out just yet.
Speaking with Shams Charania of The Athletic, the former Sixers guard declared that he has more gravity-defying feats in store for fans, giving them something to look forward to when the 2024 All-Star festivities commence in Indianapolis, Indiana.
“I’ll come up with some things. I have a couple [dunks] I didn’t do that I don’t think have been seen before but I’ll create some new things. If I’m invited again, I’ll do my best to be prepared and try to invent some new dunks,” McClung said.
76ers guard and NBA Slam Dunk champion Mac McClung sits down with @Stadium: “I have a couple dunks I didn’t do that I don’t think have been seen before.” Also: Potential NBA G League title and MVP this season, dunk contest lessons, goals and more. pic.twitter.com/QPM1wjyozy
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 29, 2023
What endeared the Sixers G-Leaguer to fans all over the globe, beyond his feel-good underdog story of taking on NBA rotation players such as Trey Murphy III, Kenyon Martin Jr., and Jericho Sims, was his ability to get his insanely creative dunks right the first time.
“Making your dunks is very important. I felt like getting the crowd on your side with those first dunks and being ready to adapt, seeing what other people do [were important]. I wasn’t doing my exact script, so just being able to adapt to the situation and doing a certain dunk you know you’re comfortable with [goes a long way towards dunk contest success],” McClung added.
It’ll definitely be interesting to see what other tricks the former Sixers guard has up his sleeve. After winning the 2023 Slam Dunk Contest with an eye-popping 540-degree dunk, there’s no putting a ceiling on what magic McClung could conjure up in mid-air.
For now, however, McClung’s focus will be on helping the Sixers’ G-League affiliate, the Blue Coats, win the G-League championship. McClung is currently averaging 19.8 points and 4.9 assists in 28 games for the Blue Coats, as they will definitely be relying heavily on the dunk champ as they take on the Capital City Go-Go in the Eastern Conference semifinals.