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JaVale McGee and Blake Griffin advance to finals of Slam Dunk contest

February 19, 2011 |  7:51 pm


Fan favorite Blake Griffin of the Clippers and Wizards center JaVale McGee got the highest two-dunk combined scores from five judges at Staples Center to advance to the finals of the Slam Dunk contest on Saturday night at Staples Center.

Griffin's 360-degree corkscrew slam and windmill dunk off a ball bounced from the side of the backboard triggered big applause and scored 95 combined points.

McGee pulled off a pair of simultaneous dunks. With a ball in each hand, he dunked into side-by-side baskets and got a perfect 50 point score from courtside judges in first effort. In his next dunk, McGee dunked three balls at once, the third feed to him as he slammed the first two. He scored 99 points for the round.  

Thunder power forward Serge Ibaka in his second attempt pulled off a bizarre dunk by snatching a stuffed toy hanging from the rim with his teeth while doing a reverse slam. But Ibaka was eliminated in the first round as was Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan.

The final round will be scored by fans nationwide.

--Barry Stavro

Photo: Clippers power forward Blake Griffin pulls off a 360-degree corkscrew slam in the first round of the Slam Dunk contest. Credit: Lucy Nicholson / Reuters