For those who only saw the highlights, or who missed the NBA dunk contest this weekend, I need to address what really happened:
The 2011 NBA dunk contest was a scripted, WWF-style event
Each of the 4 participants (Blake Griffin, DeMar Derozoan, Serge Ibaka, Javale McGee) had a celebrity coach. The celebrity "coaches" (mainly Chris Webber and Kenny Smith) were the equivalent of early 1990s pro wrestling managers (think Jimmy Hart) who gave speeches and other bizarre things before dunks. I'm not joking. Aside from the fact that each had a coach/manager, the NBA decided that instead of relying on young athletes to somehow think of original dunks or original ways to provide showmanship in a dunk contest, the NBA also followed the lead of the WWF/WWE/WCW and MUST have had writers script each athlete's dunks. The 1st round of dunks were better than the last 5 years combined I believe! Here's what happened in the opening round:
1) McGee dunking two basketballs on two hoops standing next to each other
2) McGee following it with dunking three basketballs (two quickly, and tapping a 3rd one in on an alley oop)
3) Ibaka involving a young, 7-year old child actor who said "my toy is stuck on the hoop!" and Ibaka saying, "don't worry, I'll get it down," then Ibaka inadvertently knocking part of the stuffed monkey to the ground, requiring an NBA employee to get on a lift to re-install the stuffed monkey, so Ibaka then dunked the basketball and caught part of the toy monkey in his mouth, and then took it out of his mouth and gave the toy to the child actor
4) Ibaka dunking from the free throw line (a la Jordan)
5) Derozan actually doing unreal dunks (but less showmanship)
6) Blake Griffin doing worse dunks than Derozan, but advancing with the EXACT NECESSARY score because of his planned finale involving a gospel choir singing "I believe I can Fly" while Griffin jumped over the hood of a KIA car where Baron Davis threw a pass through the moon roof of the car.
In conclusion, the dunk contest was exciting. I just never thought I would see an event with more props (extra hoops, choirs, cars, toy monkeys, horrible child actors) and scripts than in all of the previous dunk contests combined. There's obviously no turning back now though. 2012's dunk contest will have to be even better. I think fire is the next obvious element to include!