We rank 'em. You react. That's how the Daily List rolls.
6/15/2007 02:04:00 PM
Best Dunkers of All Time
James White often put on dunk show when he attended the University of Cincinnati.
Photo by AP
By Lang Whitaker, SI.com
CLEVELAND -- The San Antonio Spurs are one of those teams where the sum of the parts is equal to something pretty damn great. One of the Spurs bench players this season has been rookie swingman James "Flight" White. JW played his college ball at Florida and Cincinnati, and after a brief stop with the Pacers found an NBA home in San Antonio, where the Spurs have mostly used him as a practice player while they allow him to develop into an NBA player. White hoped to initially make his mark in the NBA as a defender, although many who follow basketball closely already know White as maybe the best dunker in the world. His windmills from the free-throw line and various dunks where he finishes with his eyes above the rim have made him a YouTube superstar.
Despite his impassioned pleas, White couldn't wrangle an invite to the NBA's Slam Dunk contest this season. He hopes to get there next season in New Orleans, where he says he has "all kinds of things planned, stuff nobody's ever seen before."
In the meantime, we asked White to select his five favorite dunkers of all time. In no particular order, White said…
1. Michael Jordan: "He dunked on so many people," White recalls. "He really changed dunking for everyone."
Dr. J and Dominique Wilkins should be on the list. Perhaps if Mr. White had fulfilled his commitment to his teammates at the University of Cincinnati and stayed eligible his entire senior season, he would have seen the Doctor and 'Nique whooping up on some people in one of his 'challenging' classes.
I don't know how any discussion of the best dunkers of all-time cannot include Dominique Wilkins???!!!??? An artist at the dunk, he was robbed when the All-Star dunk contest was in Chicago when Mike won it (and I'm from Chicago and can admit it)
1. MJ, for sure, unbelievable, simply took the dunk to a new level. 2. Dominique Wilkins, the human highlight show! 3. Dr. J, Revolutionized the flying dunk! 4. Daryl Dawkins, smashing backboards became commonplace. 5a. Shawn Kemp, amazing spread, could part the waters on his way to the basket. 5b. Vince Carter, a little of MJ, a little of Shawn, but darn fun to watch.
Any list of "greatest" dunkers is incomplete without including "The Human Highlight Film" and the good Dr. himself. Julius Erving's dunks brought a flair to a game that was desperate for a spark to help move the league into the mainstream. Dominique Wilkins IS the blueprint for serving up a facial. We owe the saying "POSTERIZED" to Nique.
How could you not include "The Human Highlight Film" D. Wilkins was even better than Jordan. In the head to head he was robbed, thus he is still being robbed of being regarded as one of the all time greats.
All of you have forgotten about the sublime and stellar Clyde Drexler. He dunked over Jordan, Wilkins and even the ginat Mark Eaton with ease in the laste 80s and early 90s. He was trully the eminent shooting guard of the NBA in the 80s and 90s.
He forgot Julius Erving because he evidently think the NBA was born in 1990, based on that list. Add wooden floors and Chuck Taylors to the mix, and give more props to the older guys. Not to mention that there was a guy who used to play in Harlem on the streets but never made the NBA, who was allegedly the best of all, but a one-trick pony. Can't remember his name.
Michael Jordan is definitely number one, number two i would say would be Dominique Wilkins, number three would be Lebron James, number four would be Julius " the doctor " Erving, number five would be Spud Webb so many people overlook him but how can you overlook someone so small yet so vertically talented i remember him destroyimg people in the '88 dunk contest including dominique so he definitely deserves a shot on my list and Vince Carter even though may be talented he can't really accel past dunking or being selfish with the ball thats why he continues to fail in making it to the finals that and he falls apart at the last second when his teammates need him the most much like Kobe Bryant the difference is that while Kobe does not meltdown he is the most selfish player in the game and that is why him or anybody else will NOT be the next Michael Jordan please as if anybody ever could? thats as ridiculous to me as saying the Greg Oden will be he next Bill Russell yeah I'll believe that after Oden wins 12 championship rings
1. mr. jordan only he gave dunking a new definition he changed the game , and he dunked on so many people the man had wings 2. nique - great combination of size and rise , plus creatvitity . 3. vince carter refer back to his entrance into the show u choose the night of sport center and u will probably catch a young carter defying gravity . 4. james white he's like that pick in ther draft that get picked of potential i mean if anyone seen that college dnk contest then u already know all this kid needs is a stage and he'll do the rest 5. harold miner ok stop laughing no i mean it stop laughing or at least take it down to a respectable chuckle , harold miner although he falls into the whatever happened to that guy catagory he still capitvated the world of dunking for a couple of years most powerful dunker for his size and his generation either him or robert pack u choose
Ummmmm, Kobe Bryant anyone???? Love him or hate him, he's right up there with MJ in terms of his dunks. Just ask Yao Ming! Dominique Wilkins has got to be on this list as well, and you can even make an argument for Jason Richardson based on his dunk contest performances. But I'd love to see James White in the NBA dunk contest. My jaw hit the floor when I saw him do a windmill from the foul line in the NCAA contest. He literally flies!
hello? hello? anyone home? nique and dr. j? even kobe should be on there. and mj may be the greatest player of all time, but vinsanity is the greatest dunker. anyone who watches bball (or even youtube) would know that.
did anyone mention Dr J, Dominique, or Dawkins yet. My favorite in game dunkers of this era(i'm only 13) are Andre Igoudala in the open court,Kobe,LeBron, and Vince Carter posterizing, and Shaqs power.
To not include Dr. J is crazy! The majority of his greatest dunks were in the ABA (unfortunately much less surviving tape), but the one over Michael Cooper of the Lakers is one of the his most spectacular. Read accounts of the 1976 ABA championship series between Dr. J and David Thompson for a dunk fest for the ages!
1)Michael Jordan - Enough Said! 2)Dominique Wilkins - I never seen a better dunker with his combo or grace & POWER. 3)Doctor J - Brought dunking to a new level. 4)Vince Carter - Carried the biton from Michael, however he reminds me more of Nique with syle & power. 5)Clyde Drexler/Shawn Kemp - No one could glide in the air like Clyde, and in his prime Shawn Kemp was unbelievable (the prettiest of the tall group)...I can never get enough of seeing Payton to Kemp!
Remember Billy Ray Bates! He was with the Portland Trailblazers during their championship and immortalized in David Halberstam's book,"Breaks of the Game" He was the first guard I saw who challenged defenses with his electrifying dunks from the guard position.
An all time dunk list without Dr J is almost criminal; he could leave the floor from around the foul line and dunk or drive the base line and dunk from behind the backboard. Also, David Thompson, had he not messed up, could have been the greatest all around player of all time, MJ included.
1. Ronnie Fields (Went to High School with Kevin Garnett; didn't make it to the NBA because of a car accident suffered his senior year of high school after basketball season) 2. Kobe Bryant 3. Michael Jordan (Should be ranked higher, but don't remember a great fact of putting up 81 in a game, huh?) 4. LeBron James (Duh? We're talking about the King!) 5. Vince Carter (Air Carter)
1. MJ - No doubt about it. 2. Dr. J. - A revolutionary. 3. Dominique Wilkins "The Human Highlight Reel" - 48 inch Vert. 4. Vince Carter 5. Kobe or Clyde the Glide Drexler.
Dominique in the Dunk contest in 1988 (I believe) was Amazing. He should have won against MJ. The double pump reverse dunk while dropping the ball below his knees was amazing. He also did an eye popping windmill in that same contest. Kobe does some spectacular in game dunks (even though I don't really like him, I gotta give him his props). Clyde could dunk from just about anywhere and would just fly over everyone (much like David Thompson). Chocolate Thunder was good, but more of a power dunker than a finese dunker.
1.Air Jordan: remember his sideways "superman" dunk or his flush on Ewing? Next! 2.Dr J: Jordan freely admitted copying some of Doc's moves; most feared player in ABA history. 3.Dominique: Human Highlight Reel probably jumped higher than any dunker alive. Had some nasty throwdowns. 4.Vince Carter: rewind the Olympic reel to see him jump OVER another man. Sick! 5.Connie Hawkins: if Dr J sez the Hawk was the greatest dunker he's ever seen, then I believe him.
Exactly fellow fans. No Dr. J! No Dominique Wilkins! SHAME ON YOU for not listing or knowing about the 2 best dunkers in NBA history. I would put Dwayne Wade and Kobe Bryant up there too. Obviously you don't watch NBA games. You better start. :-)