What more did Aaron Gordon have to do to win the 2020 dunk contest?
The Orlando Magic forward did five straight dunks that earned him a perfect score of 50. Then he completed a dunk that cleared all 7’5 of Tacko Fall in his first attempt. Somehow, the judges still gave Derrick Jones, Jr. the win, a decision so questionable it has already spawned its own conspiracy theory.
Add in the fact that Gordon also probably should have won the 2016 dunk contest over Zach LaVine, and this decision becomes even more unforgivable.
To be fair, Jones was incredible in his own right. He jumped over a guy while taking an alley-oop off the backboard and then going under his legs for a dunk. He did a reverse 360 under-the-legs slam. He jumped over two guys and went through his legs. The fact that Jones was able to put up such a strong effort against Gordon is what made this one of the best dunk contests ever. But Gordon was better and should have won.
Gordon was right when he told Rachel Nichols that he should have two trophies by now.
Gordon also said he won’t do the dunk contest again after losing again in controversial fashion. Let it be said: Gordon is one of the best dunkers in the history of the contest even if he doesn’t have a title to his name.
Gordon put on an incredible performance. He did a rock-the-cradle 360 dunk off a feed from Markelle Fultz. He did a reverse under-the-legs 180. He dunked over Chance the Rapper multiple times. Gordon’s dunk contest performance will ultimately be remembered for his final attempt — an impromptu slam over Fall that the judges shamefully scored as a 47, which was one point below where Jones scored.
This should have won the dunk contest outright. If nothing else, give him a 48 so he can tie with Jones and keep a great competition going.
Hip-hop artist Common, one of the judges, even said that was the plan.
Grizzlies rookie star Ja Morant was so upset about Gordon’s loss that he indicated he no longer wants to do the contest in the future because of the judging.
judges are wilding ♂️— Ja Morant (@JaMorant) February 16, 2020
Gordon now has eight perfect dunks throughout the years — the most in the history of the contest. For as great as his 2020 performance was, he was probably even better in 2016.
It’s hard to blame Gordon for being upset. He pledged to find the people who gave him the nines on his dunk over Fall.
The 2020 dunk contest was a success because it was thoroughly entertaining. The only problem is Gordon should have won — again.