Nearly every season leading up to All-Star Weekend, LeBron James is asked about the annual slam dunk contest, a competition in which he has never competed. He never has, but it is easy to see why anyone would want him to.
The dunk contest is no longer the must-see event it became in the 1980s and 1990s, when Michael Jordan, and Dominique Wilkins (among others) won multiple titles. But if James made an appearance, the dunk contest would certainly grab big TV ratings.
Over the past few weeks, Miami Heat beat writers have been mentioning on social media that James has turned the Heat's pregame layup drill into his own personal slam dunk contest, trying the kinds of difficult and complex dunks that make the dunk contest worth watching.
Before Sunday's game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, a Heat fan in the American Airlines Arena caught one of James' dunks with a smartphone camera and uploaded the result to YouTube. As you can see below, James did not disappoint the handful of fans who had shown up early for warmups.
James pivoted at the free throw line, passed the ball between his legs, then threw it against the backboard for an alley oop. Watch the video below:
If he keeps pulling off dunks like this in warmups, the chorus clamoring for James to make an appearance in next season's slam dunk contest will only grow louder.
But James does not seem any more likely to try his hand at the dunk contest. Earlier this month, James was asked about it, and he replied, "I'm getting older. It ain't looking good."