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The 2009 NBA Sprite Slam Dunk Contest

The NBA Sprite Slam Dunk Contest is the NBA's (National Basketball Association) annual competition sponsored by Sprite, the official softdrink of the league since 1994 and the world's leading lemon-lime softdrink. In the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest, players display their various athletic and creative skills in dunking, trying to “out-dunk” each other. The particular rules of this contest is being decided annually, but it is being judged arbitrarily. The players of the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest are awarded a mark out of 10 from 5 judges after each dunk displayed (making 50 as the highest possible score). Normal rules pertaining to double dribbling and traveling do not apply in this kind of competition.

The 2009 NBA Sprite Slam Dunk Contest was held at the U.S. Airways Center in Phoenix, Arizona during the NBA All-Star Game on February 14, 2009. In the competition, Nate Robinson, guard of the New York Knicks, beat the defending champion Dwight Howard (of Orlando Magic, center) in the league's exciting Slam Dunk competition on Saturday.

Robinson won 52 percent of the fans' votes. Wearing the all-green uniform of the New York Knicks, the 5-foot-9 guard used the 6-foot-11 center as a “prop” for his final dunk, jumping over him to make the shot. Howard's last dunk was a reverse alley-oop off the bounce, using his “prop” as the springboard. Denver Nugget's J.R. Smith (the last-minute replacement of Rudy Gay for an injury in the hip flexor) had his teammate Sonny Weems go eight rows up and throw an alley-oop that Smith caught and put it in a two-handed slam dunk. Portland Trail Blazers' Rudy Fernandez had Laker's All-Star Pau Gasol assist him in his second dunk, instead of using a player from his own team.


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