Former Rockets will judge dunk contest
by USA TODAY Sports, USA TODAY
Clyde Drexler, Dikembe Mutombo, Hakeem Olajuwon, Rudy Tomjanovich, and Yao Ming will serve as judges in Saturday’s Sprite Slam Dunk contest, the NBA announced. The five Houston Rockets legends will score all of the dunks in the first round (the Team Round) of the event.
The event will be televised on TNT at 8 p.m.
Participants in this year’s contest will be 2012 champion Jeremy Evans of the Utah Jazz, Eric Bledsoe of the Los Angeles Clippers and Kenneth Faried from Denver representing the Western Conference. Representing the Eastern Conference is Gerald Green from the Indiana Pacers, Terrence Ross from the Toronto Raptors and James White of the New York Knicks.
Drexler played 15 seasons for the Rockets and Portland Trail Blazers, was a 10-time NBA All-Star, a two-time NBA champion with the Rockets, enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 2004, and was a member of the 1992 USA Basketball Dream Team.
Mutombo, who played the final five seasons of his 18-year career with the Rockets, was a four-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, an eight-time NBA All-Star, and currently serves as an NBA Global Ambassador.
Olajuwon is a two-time NBA Champion with the Rockets (1994 and 1995), a 12-time NBA All-Star, was named the 1993-94 NBA Most Valuable Player, and was enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2008.
Tomjanovich played for the Rockets for 11 seasons while being named an NBA All-Star five times and coached the team for 12 seasons, including their back-to-back NBA Championships. Yao was the number one overall pick for the Rockets in the 2002 NBA Draft and an eight-time NBA All-Star.
The 2013 Sprite Slam Dunk contest will consist of the three Eastern Conference players competing against the three from the Western Conference in a two-round competition. The highest scoring East competitor and the highest scoring West competitor from the Team Round will compete head-to-head to determine the champion. Fan voting will open at the beginning of the Championship Round and the player with the highest percentage of combined votes from all platforms will … [For more on Former Rockets will judge dunk contest, click here.]