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The Miami Heat's LeBron James put on a show Tuesday night, scoring 40 points with 16 assists and capping off one of the best individual months in NBA history. But before the game he let loose with another one of his layup-line slam dunks that was caught on tape.
The NBA posted a video on its YouTube page of LeBron's dunk, a between-the-legs tomahawk slam. This is the second game in a row that produced a viral video of a pregame dunk.
On Sunday, a fan with a smartphone caught James making a trick dunk before the game and posted it on YouTube. Heat owner Micky Arison got in the act of promoting what has become a regular pregame ritual for James this season, tweeting a link to the video on Tuesday and telling Heat fans, "Great reason to come early" to the American Airlines Arena.
Watch LeBron's dunk from Tuesday below:
But James does not seem thrilled about the attention he is getting for these pregame dunks. After Tuesday's game, he told ESPN.com that he may put the dunk routine to a halt if the attention it brings becomes too much to deal with.
"Maybe I should stop because it's making a lot of people mad about what I do," James said, to the horror of Heat fans and dunk enthusiasts. "They're like, 'Well, if you can do it in warm-ups, why don't you [want to] be in the dunk contest?' Stop it."
James has never appeared in the NBA's Slam Dunk Contest, held annually during All-Star Weekend. The league would certainly love the ratings boost that an appearance would bring, but even so it seems like James is overstating the cries of fans and broadcasters who want him to participate.
"I've been hearing about it," James said of his recent dunk notoriety. "But I don't really watch TV or go on the Internet too much."
He called the pregame dunks (in which his Heat teammates also participate) "our new thing," likening it to the Harlem Shake, the current viral video fad.
Here's hoping James is only bluffing when he says he might stop the pregame dunks. Like a rare flower, James' dunks are too beautiful not to share with the rest of the world.