* Can we all agree that the Slam Dunk contest not only lived up to the hype, but is probably the best one since Carter, McGrady, and Francis from 2000? It seems most fans agree on little else regarding the contest, so I thought I’d throw that out there. Anyway, I do think Ibaka was underscored (he dunked from almost an entire a foot BEHIND the free throw line!), but some of the Haterade I’ve seen thrown Blake Griffin’s way makes me roll my eyes. Sure, you can make an argument in favor of any of the other guys winning instead of Blake, but don’t sit there and talk/type with a straight face that you think Blake’s car dunk was EASY. Seriously, people, PLEASE. Let me see you extend your legs high enough in the air over an entire car hood length before spouting off, okay? Yes, most people who jump from the area Blake did can dunk with relative ease, but the car DOES complicate things. Keep in mind that Blake had to keep his legs up high enough for the whole jump over the hood, not just for a split second or two like most people do when they jump from that area without a car involved. In most jumps with the car there, people would hit their feet on the hood, or else bang a knee or some other leg part there and probably end up face-planting on the car itself, or the ground below. So, yeah, let’s be realistic and take basic physics into account before saying that dunk was “easy.”

* Now that I got that off my chest, I must say that the All-Star game itself wasn’t particularly exciting. These games are never very fine examples of execution, but we have seen some competitive games in the last decade, so I was hoping for a little more. Instead, this was neither a good game of execution or competition. I got bored in the first half after seeing such sloppy play and the East’s continued ineptitude – this was basically a Kobe-fest at Los Angeles, which I’m sure enthralled the local crowd, but left much of the rest of the nation yawning in a lack of surprise.

* Never invite Boobie Gibson and my man Durantula to a three-point contest again. That was sad. James Jones pulled off a nice upset, though.

* Why do so many guys lolly-gag around the dummy defenders in the Skills Challenge? Stephen Curry showed how it’s SUPPOSED to be done. With all the whining about how easy Blake’s dunk supposedly was, let me tell you something that IS easy – going around a motionless piece of cardboard in less than a second. Too many guys just cruise around it, or give an excessive shoulder jerk move that looks fancy, but slows them down a good second or two. C’mon, show some SPEED!

* Josh Groban > Christina Aguilera for the National Anthem. Not that this was surprising or anything.

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