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NBA All-Star notes: Second-chance points tell tale in dunk contest

Do-overs are order of the day for many in All-Star dunk competition, including Raptors' Terrence Ross, who wins despite missing first six attempts in first round.

February 16, 2013|By Ben Bolch

HOUSTON — If at first you don't succeed, then you would fit right in at the NBA's dunk contest.

The first two rounds of the competition Saturday night at Toyota Center involved more do-overs than actual dunks.

New York's James White missed five attempts in the allotted 90 seconds in the second round. Given another untimed attempt, he missed that one too.

"I'm glad everybody try-tried again," said Clippers guard Eric Bledsoe, who missed four attempts in the first round before simplifying his approach and making a spinning dunk after touching the ball against the backboard. "It happens."

Toronto's Terrence Ross missed his first six attempts in the first round before recovering to win the event in fan voting via tweets and texts.

Wearing a Vince Carter jersey as a tribute to the former Raptors dunk champion, Ross took a pass off the side of the backboard for a reverse 360-degree dunk in the final round. Ross also jumped over a ball boy in his last attempt, shifting the ball between his legs and dunking with one hand.

"When I first grabbed him he said, 'You're not going to hit me, right?'" Ross recalled.

Given the way things were going, there were no guarantees.

Defending champion Jeremy Evans was runner-up after making a left-handed windmill dunk over an easel cloaked in black cloth. He removed the cloth and signed a painting of himself executing the same move.

Players vote Hunterout as union chief

Billy Hunter was ousted as executive director of the union in a unanimous vote by players who said they will "no longer be divided, misled, misinformed."

"This is our union and we have taken it back," said Derek Fisher, president of the players association.

In brief remarks, Fisher said that a new executive committee had been elected and he will remain as president.

San Antonio's Matt Bonner is vice president, Miami's James Jones is secretary-treasurer and Brooklyn's Jerry Stackhouse the first vice president. The Clippers' Chris Paul, Golden State's Stephen Curry, Denver's Andre Iguodala, New Orleans' Roger Mason Jr. and the Clippers' Willie Green are vice presidents.

Preliminary competitions

After making 17 of his first 18 shots in the final round, Cleveland guard Kyrie Irving edged the Spurs' Bonner, 23-20, to win the three-point competition.

Portland's Damian Lillard won the skills competition, an obstacle course in which players race to make a chest pass, bounce pass, top-of-the-key shot and dribble around imaginary defenders.

The team of Chris Bosh, Dominique Wilkins and Swin Cash won the Shooting Stars contest, in which players try to make shots from various spots on the court as quickly as possible.

All-Star memories

Commissioner David Stern, presiding over his 37th and final All-Star game before his retirement next February, said his favorite memory at the league's midseason showcase was presenting former Lakers great Magic Johnson the most valuable player trophy in 1992 in Orlando, Fla., only months after Johnson had been diagnosed with HIV.

"Giving sweaty Magic Johnson a big hug right after he hit the last three and still being able to hug him, because he's alive every time I see him," Stern said. "That is at the top of my list."

See you in Seattle?

Stern said it was "plausible" that Sacramento could make an offer compelling enough to keep the Kings from relocating to Seattle under the proposed ownership group led by hedge-fund manager Chris Hansen. "I expect that the owners have a very open mind on this," Stern said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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