Following up on the news earlier this week that Dirk Nowitzki had been invited to participate in the three point contest on All-Star Saturday, today news broke from Shams Charania that Dennis Smith Jr. has been invited and will participate in the NBA All Star Slam Dunk Contest.
Sources @TheAthleticNBA @WatchStadium: Dallas Mavericks point guard Dennis Smith Jr. has committed to the NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest in Charlotte.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 25, 2019
On the heels of that news, Charania also broke that rookie Luka Doncic plans to participate in the Skills Challenge.
Dallas Mavericks rookie star Luka Doncic plans to participate in the Skills Competition at All-Star weekend in Charlotte, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @WatchStadium.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 25, 2019
If you missed the news from Wednesday, Dirk has been invited to the three point contest but has not confirmed entry as of this writing.
Dirk Nowitzki has been invited to participate in the 3-point contest at All-Star Weekend in Charlotte, league sources say.— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) January 23, 2019
While Dennis Smith had heretofore been noncommittal at best about the dunk contest, this is welcome news to fans looking to see him avenge his very stupid loss last year. He had the best dunk!!!
While Smith hoped to rely on the sheer audacity of his athleticism, this year he may have to up his showmanship, after all, he’s catering to old judges who can’t see anymore.
The inclusion of Doncic in the skills challenge is somewhat amusing, since while he has displayed a spectacular skill level, it’s questionable if that translates to a stupid obstacle course. Though I can’t say I mind, the idea of three Mavericks participating in the headlining events is really fun.
The Rising Stars Challenge participants have yet to be announced but with both Smith and Doncic on the roster radar (only 10 players get picked for each team) and the specter of Luka hovering over the All-Star team bench selection, it could end up being a very Maverick weekend.
UPDATE: Dirk Nowitzki confirmed to reporters after last night’s game that he will, in fact, participate in the three-point competition. Well THAT’s going to be fun!