Michael Jordan Brings ‘The Buzz’ Back To Charlotte

This story originally appeared on Forbes.com (5/22/2013)

What’s in a name? Everything. It is the difference between being known and unknown. It is the difference between having solid goodwill or a less than stellar reputation.

In professional sports, name and brand recognition is just as important as winning. And it is essential that franchises protect their name and brand. It is who they are and what fans identify with. Properly nurturing and building a brand creates loyalty and it can uplift a team even during down seasons.

Said another way, it is hard to root for a team when you do not know what you are cheering for. This is one of the many challenges of building an expansion sports franchise. Goodwill does not automatically exist, and it can take years to build.

So early this year when the then New Orleans Hornets announced plans to change its name to the New Orleans Pelicans, I saw the availability of the Hornets name as a golden opportunity for the Charlotte Bobcats recapture its identity, which has been missing for the last nine seasons.

Yesterday, Bobcats Chairman and majority owner, Michael Jordan, announced that change is coming and he’s bringing the buzz back to Charlotte.

The Charlotte Bobcats will be renamed the Charlotte Hornets beginning in 2014-15 NBA season. Technically, the franchise has only officially submitted an application to the NBA Board of Governors to change the team name and the request will not be approved until a vote by the 29 other NBA owners in July. However, given that the change could increase the franchise’s BRI (basketball related income), it seems highly unlikely that Jordan’s fellow owners would vote against the potential increase in revenue-sharing.

The cost to complete the overhaul is estimated at $4 million, which will include rebranding everything from uniforms to arena signage. Although, it unclear if the organization will retain the purple and teal color scheme, but if you ask me, the team should stick with its signature color palate (Again, it’s all about brand recognition). The team will not attempt to reclaim the Hornets history, but instead will embrace players from its past.

Now do not get me wrong, a name change will not erase the fact that the Bobcats have posted an embarrassing 28-120 record over the course of the last two seasons, which is the worst in the NBA. And changing the name will not undo questionable draft choices or alter the team’s ability to retain a quality head coach (the team has cycled through three head coaches in three seasons). And it surely will not fill an arena night in and night out. But what it will do is bring an identity to a franchise that has been starving for energy and direction.

Remember the adage, “You don’t know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been?” Well it applies here.

Once upon a time, the Hornets posted 364 straight sold-out games. And some of most recognizable and marketable players in the NBA played in Charlotte. The list includes Muggsy Bogues standing 5’3” was the biggest little man in the league; Larry Johnson, nicknamed Grandmama, once signed the most lucrative contract in the NBA and was the first to make bling popular with his signature gold tooth; and Alonzo Mourning, who was second to Shaquille O’Neal in rookie of the year voting. Now is the time for Charlotte basketball to remember where it has been, and build a brighter (more competitive) future.

NBA Goes ‘BIG’ For Fans

Screen-shot-2012-04-03-at-2.04.37-PMNBA Action is Fantastic. I Love This Game. Where Amazing Happens.

If you are an NBA fan, there is no doubt these marketing campaigns spark nostalgic feelings and perhaps back in the day motivated you to play a game of pickup basketball.

For the NBA, these successful campaigns translated into revenue growth, increased television viewership, and strong brand equity; their simplistic creativity connected the NBA’s loyal fan base to professional basketball’s biggest stars.

Now the question remains, will the league strike marketing gold with its“BIG” campaign?

On the heels of the 2011 lockout, the NBA announced “BIG Things Are Coming. The league carried the campaign into the 2012-2013 season by producing memorable 30 second videos (Royalty is BIGFamily is BIG,and Unbelievable is BIG) featuring Spike Lee, Kevin Durant and his mother Wanda Pratt, Chris Paul, Magic Johnson, and Steve Nash.

The NBA’s fourth and final spot of the 2012-2013 BIG regular season campaign (Together is BIG) goes national today. The ad makes a comedic comparison between the Milwaukee Bucks’ backcourt stars Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis to the ‘70s TV icons Laverne & Shirley.

With a feminine twist, the spot highlights Jennings and Ellis’ spectacular moments of the season—all set to the tune of the Laverne & Shirley theme song, “Make Our Dreams Come True.” According the NBA, the ad is designed to “embody the hard work and team spirit that has come to define the City of Milwaukee and the Bucks style of basketball.”

What do you think? Does the NBA’s latest advertising campaign score with fans?

LeBron James Headlines Champs Sports’ SWAG Magazine

Swag is slang for describing style or presence that shows confidence.

Champs Sports, a division of Foot Locker, Inc. (NYSE:FL), has elevated the term into a hub for sport lifestyle with its new app-based digital magazine called SWAG – Stylish Ways to Acquire Game.

SWAG targets Champs Sports’ core consumers, male athletes ages 16-24 who are into a sport lifestyle, and features interactive videos, player interviews, and head-to-toe athletic gear.

For Champs Sports, SWAG is all about innovation. It is an example of evolving from the tried and true marketing methods of television and point of sales, and pushing to try new things.

The partnership with vendors, including Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour allows Champs Sports to create original content and share a side of athletes that fans are not used to seeing.

Issue one featured Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (second-youngest player to reach 10,000 points and the NBA’s leading scorer the last three seasons) and his love of hip hop.

Issue two drops today and includes the NBA’s and NFL’s most talked about athletes – LeBron James (Miami Heat), Larry Fitzgerald (Arizona Cardinals), and Julio Jones (Atlanta Falcons).

The James profile is a four-part video series called SWAG16, and highlights his 16 favorite things. Those must-have things including Twitter, fresh haircuts, NFL Sundays and the ‘90s sitcom Martin- are pitted head-to-head in a bracket-style showdown as James is quizzed by comedian Jerrod Carmichael to reveal the one thing he cannot live without.

James’ rise from a high school prodigy to an NBA Champion, League MVP, and Olympic Gold Medalist is well documented; the SWAG16 feature allows Champs Sports to show another dimension of James that has not been covered.

“We are very excited about this new partnership with Champ Sports,” said Maverick Carter, CEO of LRMR. “It helps us tell an original story about LeBron by connecting directly with fans through our digital and social platforms.”

Along with discovering James’ favorite things, fans can use the mobile app to browse and purchase items from the LeBron James Collection in the reoccurring section called The Blueprint. LeBronJames.com will also include ads directing visitors to a branded microsite on ChampsSports.com where they can purchase the latest LeBron James sneakers, apparel and accessories.

“Building a marketing program around LeBron James and having a product assortment of footwear, apparel and accessories inspired by LeBron is the perfect marriage of product meets marketing,” said Frank Bracken, Vice President of Market at Champs Sports. “Digital platforms make shopping more exciting and a little more unique for the consumer.”

In 2011, Champs Sports became the third member of Foot Locker, Inc.’s $1 billion club, joining Foot Locker U.S. and Europe. This milestone contributed to Foot Locker, Inc. achieving its highest level of profitability ($5.6 billion) in its history as an athletic footwear and apparel company.

While Champs Sports was unable to provide metrics regarding SWAG’s performance, the company disclosed that the Ecommerce traffic to ChampsSports.com and sales have been above industry norm. A strong showing from SWAG during the holiday season should position the brand to match or exceed last year’s earnings.

USA Basketball Scores High London Olympics Ratings For NBC

This post originally appeared on Forbes.com on August 16, 2012

USA Basketball assembled its strongest men’s and women’s teams for the 2012 London Olympics with one goal in mind – bring home the gold.

The anticipation of the WNBA superstars, Candace Parker, Diana Taurasi, and Tamika Catchings, competing for a record fifth consecutive gold medal and NBA all-stars, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and LeBron James, playing on one unified team did not disappoint basketball fans.

While NBC Sports received intense criticism for its decision to tape delay many Olympic sporting events including track and field, swimming, and gymnastics, the network managed to broadcast a number of men’s and women’s basketball games live. Ultimately, this decision worked in NBC’s favor as both the men’s and women’s basketball teams earned high television ratings for the network.

Here’s how USA Women’s and Men’s Basketball 2012 London Olympics ratings stack up as reported by the NBA and WNBA…

The USA Women’s Basketball Gold Medal game against France averaged 10.2 million viewers, up +73% versus the 2008 Women’s Gold Medal game on NBC (5.9 million viewers). The three USA women’s games broadcasted on NBC averaged more than 10 million viewers.

The women’s team also performed strong for NBC Sports Network. The five games on the network averaged 1.24 million viewers per game+26% higher than the team’s average on USA Network in 2008.

The USA Men’s Basketball gold medal game against Spain averaged 12.5 million viewers and an 8.2 household rating, making it the most viewed and highest rated men’s basketball gold medal telecast since 2000. The game more than doubled the average viewership for the men’s basketball gold medal telecast in Beijing (6.0 million viewers).

On NBC Sports Network, the six USA Men’s Basketball games averaged more than 2.6 million viewers, up 81% versus the four game average on USA Network in 2008, including a high of 3.3 million viewers for the game against Argentina.

The viewership momentum established during the 2012 London Olympics will more than likely carry into the WNBA’s and NBA’s 2012 regular seasons. The NBA is set to tip-off on November 1st with its first full season since the lockout.

Meanwhile, the WNBA was in the midst of its 16th season when the league took an extended break allowing players and coaches to participate in the Olympic Games. The 2012 WNBA season resumes today, and in celebration of the historic 41-game Olympic winning streak the league will run a special promotion produced by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners featuring the 12 gold medal Olympians.

“The WNBA is very excited to welcome our athletes back from London,” said WNBA President Laurel J. Richie.  “This spot celebrates their historic achievement and sets the stage for the intense competition we will see in the second half of the 2012 season.”

Watch the spot here or look for it on NBA TV and ESPN2, as well as NBA and WNBA digital media channels.

Tom Gores Puts His Stamp On The Detroit Pistons With Arena Renovations

As of 2010, approximately 80% of NBA, NFL, and MLB teams were playing in facilities constructed or heavily renovated since 1990.

And since 1990 there have been seventy-seven major league facility lease re-negotiations, stadium renovations, or new venues built for professional football, baseball, basketball, and hockey at an approximate cost of $12 billion. (Source: Rosner, S., The Business of Sports, 2011)

Needless to say, the facilities where professional sports teams compete are a major source of revenue and a venue owner’s utmost priority is to ensure that the arena or stadium has a reputation of being state-of-the-art.

Arena woes are often the Achilles heel of a sports franchise. It can send a team packing, as was the case in Seattle where a deal could not be reached to replace Key Arena and the Supersonics ultimately relocated to Oklahoma City. Or it can drastically reduce the available sources of revenue and threaten relocation, which is the current situation in Sacramento with Power Balance Pavilion (formerly known as Arco Arena).

For billionaire Tom Gores, his 2011 acquisition of Palace Sports & Entertainment (PS&E) not only included the NBA’s Detroit Pistons, but also The Palace of Auburn Hillswhich has a reputation of being a modern and innovative arena within the NBA.

Constructed in 1988, The Palace was ahead of its time in terms of financing and architecture. Then owner, Bill Davidson, and two developers financed the $90 million construction without soliciting public financing resources. Private financing was virtually unheard of at that time and is still a rarity today. The arena design included over 175 suites on three different levels, and the lower level suites (sixteen rows from the floor) were a first in sports facilities design.

To put the accomplishment of The Palace in perspective, just look at the five other NBA arenas built in late 1988/early 1989. Three have been demolished (Amway Arena, Charlotte Coliseum, and Miami Arena) and, two (Bradley Center and Power Balance Pavilion) are the subject of major renovations or replacement talks.

Since its opening, The Palace has maintained its position as a top arena with more than $117.5 million in upgrades and venue renovations. Recently, Gores and Palace Sports & Entertainment announced that the arena will undergo its second wave of large-scale renovations totaling $13-15 million. The current improvement plan will be the building’s largest enhancement project since 2006 when the $30 million, 65,000 square-foot Comcast Pavilion was completed.

Last season’s $10 million renovations included an updated West Atrium entrance, expanded Pistons locker room with new training room areas and player lounge, newly developed entertainment complex and visitor locker room areas, a refreshed media work room and installation of an in-arena theatrical lighting system.

Additionally, the building’s second floor was remodeled and renovated to provide greater collaboration and efficiency throughout the company’s communications, marketing and programming and production divisions.

The new large-scale renovations, most of which are projected to be completed by the beginning of the 2012-13 NBA season, include modifying and remodeling the main concourse level. The Club West – located above the West Atrium Entrance – will be completely overhauled along with other public gathering areas on the concourse.  Forty 100-level suites are slated for renovation, which are tied to new sales and renewals.

Sixteen suites in 300-level will be removed and replaced with a full-service open-air lounge overlooking the court, which is part social experiment and sports experience.

Additional renovations and improvements include:

  • Remodeling of the VIP/Administration entrance
  • Continued updates to entrances at both the West and East Atrium
  • Installation of a new air-handling system
  • Updates to furnishings, lighting and sound systems in all Palace hospitality areas
  • Installation of fan-friendly WiFi capabilities
  • Installation of concourse digital menu boards

Ultimately, the goal for Gores and his team is to brand The Palace with a fresh, clean, and consistent look. They are opening the concourse space and moving away from massive amounts of signage, in an effort to give advertisers value and fans space to communicate.

“The transformation of the West Atrium was well received last year, and we are continually looking for exciting ways to create value and provide unique entertainment opportunities for every fan attending a game, concert or family show,” said Dennis Mannion, CEO of Palace Sports & Entertainment and the Detroit Pistons.  “Our improvement plan is designed to elevate the experience for all fans by upgrading the guest facing areas and using an aesthetic approach that is consistent with the Palace brand.”

For more information on The Palace of Auburn Hills renovations watch this guided tour given by PS&E CEO Dennis Mannion. 

From The Dodgers To Detroit: How Dennis Mannion Reminds Fans Why They Love Sports

When I was growing up we lived in a small mid-Michigan town. Every kid in my neighborhood was a die-hard Detroit Pistons fan. Back then we didn’t have the internet, social media, or cable tv; but somehow we followed the team and knew everything about them.

We wore neon t-shirts with caricatures of the players. Nicknames like the Worm, the Microwave, and Buddha rolled right off of our tongues. And when the team won back-to-back NBA titles in 1989 and 1990 we celebrated by dancing to MC Hammer’s “U Can’t Touch This.”

Yes, those were the good old days.

I bet you have a similar sports memory. Don’t we all?

The challenge for 21st century professional sports executives is to create lasting nostalgic memories, like the ones I have, for a new generation of fans; and at the same time keeping the original audience coming back for more.

Dennis Mannion is one of those executives.

Since 1982, Mannion has worked in professional sports. He began his career with the Philadelphia Phillies were he was labeled as the marketing genius who was going to “put the fun back in baseball,” and make Phillies fans remember why they love baseball.

After spending 16 years with the Phillies and serving eight seasons as the club’s Vice President of Marketing and Sales, Mannion crisscrossed the sports landscape making stops in Denver (Vice President at Ascent Sports – NHL’s Colorado Avalanche; NBA’s Denver Nuggets), Baltimore (Senior Vice President of Business Ventures – NFL’s Baltimore Ravens), and Los Angeles (President/Chief Operating Officer – MLB’s Los Angeles Dodgers).

Mannion also has the rare distinction of navigating all four major professional sports leagues, and he’s humble when it comes to acknowledging this accomplishment. He credits his wife for her ability to infuse their family into his career, and as a result several of his strongest marketing ideas came straight from observing their five children, whom he calls his “focus group.”

For example, when he couldn’t pry his sons away from playing baseball video games he realized that fans wanted to see up-to-the-minute stats when watching live games.  Additionally, when he observed his daughters love of dance, he realized that fans would enjoy watching the same moves too – so he made sure that the team mascot could dance.

Mannion’s ability to transform sports franchises has brought him from Hollywood to the Midwest. In 2011, he was hired as the  President & CEO of Palace Sports & Entertainment (PS&E) after Tom Gores purchased the organization.

PS&E is the parent company that owns the DTE Energy Music Theater, the Meadow Brook Music Festival, The Palace of Auburn Hills, and its most well-known asset is the NBA’s Detroit Pistons.

The Pistons haven’t won an NBA Championship since they outplayed Kobe, Shaq and the Lakers in 2004. They also haven’t made the playoffs since 2008. Therefore, Mannion has probably accepted one of the toughest challenges of his career – reminding the gritty hard-working Pistons fans why they love Detroit Basketball.

Mannion admits that he initially wasn’t sold on the idea of using “Detroit Basketball” as the franchise’s brand. However, his staff and President of Basketball Operations, Joe Dumars, convinced him that Detroit Basketball is who they are. As a result, Mannion is strategically balancing the legacy of the old with new innovative ideas.

The Palace, built in 1988, has been outfitted with $9 million worth of renovations, which includes an upgraded front entrance, team locker-room, and state-of-the-art arena lighting. Also, the traditional “dogs catching frisbees” half-time shows have been replaced with full-blown productions featuring popular and classic music acts including, Travie McCoy, Gladys Knight, and Doug E. Fresh. And if you pay close attention you’ll see Pistons history sprinkled throughout the arena.

Tonight is the final home game of the season, and from this moment on the rebuilding process continues. Lawrence Frank, Pistons head coach, and Dumars will focus on improving the play on the court. Mannion noted that when it comes to balancing decisions that are good for the business versus decisions that are good for the sport, he learned many years ago that it is best to stay out of the General Manager’s way.

Instead, his front office team will have their sights set on re-signing their current season ticket holders, and recruiting free agent fans to invest and believe in the team as well. The club announced that it won’t increase the season ticket prices, and fans purchasing  packages will join one of two newly created membership groups, “Pistons Black” and “Pistons Red.” These two fan communities will receive their own game-day uniform, an exclusive one-of-a-kind authentic on-court Pistons team jacket.   Using advanced-microchip technology embedded in the sleeve, ticket holders can use the jacket at all games to receive discounts at The Palace.

It’s a little known fact that Mannion’s parents live in the Metro Detroit area, so if home is where your heart is Pistons fans can rest assured that Mannion will put his heart into reviving Detroit Basketball.

Good Night Sports Fans, 


How Billy Hunter Brought Labor Peace To The NBA Players Association

Did you follow the 2011 NBA lockout and feel like you were witnessing a brutal chess match? What moves would the league make and how would players counter?

Once the lockout ended and both sides held their ceremonial press conference I still wanted to learn more; what really happened during the second longest labor battle in NBA history?

Earlier this month I had the unique opportunity to hear answers to everyone’s burning questions while listening to the NBA Players Association Executive Director, G. William “Billy” Hunter, address the Mount Morris Community Association in Harlem, New York.

In the intimate setting of the Harlem Branch Public Library’s auditorium, Hunter talked candidly about his life as a collegiate and professional athlete, career as an attorney, and his role as the leader of the NBAPA.

Here’s what Hunter had to say…

The Early Years

Hunter has been leading athletes since his college football days at Syracuse University at a time when he acknowledges it was “important for athletes to stand up and make a statement.”

Going into his junior year, the team was scheduled to play southern schools that had segregated seating in their stadiums. He initiated a petition stating that the players refused to play unless the seating was integrated. Not only did he convince his teammates and student-athletes from other sports to sign the petition, but his efforts garnered the attention of the Syracuse administration. Once it was determined that he was an influential athlete, he was elevated to team captain for his remaining two seasons.

Following his collegiate career, he entered the NFL as a free agent earning $20,000 per season. After stints with the Washington Redskins, Baltimore Colts, and Miami Dolphins, Hunter earned his Juris Doctor degree from Howard University.

Hunter’s legal career has included serving as a prosecutor in the Alameda County District Attorney’s office, Chief-Assistant in the San Francisco District Attorney’s office, and an appointment as United States Attorney for the Northern District of California. There’s no question that Hunter’s tenure as an athlete and federal prosecutor prepared him for the day that the NBAPA came calling in 1996.

The NBAPA and Collective Bargaining Agreements

During Hunter’s 16 years at the helm of the NBPA, he has negotiated three collective bargaining agreements. The first in 1998 where there was a seven-month lockout, the second in 2005, and the most recent in 2011 that ended after a five-month labor battle.

Hunter notes, “Of the three collective bargaining deals that were negotiated, this was the most difficult, most stressful and taxing.” And he added that a lot of it has to do with being a victim of his own success.

Under the previous CBA the players were receiving 57% of Basketball Related Income, which Hunter explained is not 57% of every dollar that the league earns. He clarified that the players were not getting the gross, which was widely reported. Instead $600 million is deducted off the top for expense related revenues and then there is a split after that.

Hunter explained that the league was demanding that the players roll back from 57% to 39%. This reduction would mean $950 million cut per season. And according to Hunter, “There was no way we would take a $950 million cut.”

Hunter added that the deal they ended up cutting, even though they rolled back six percentage points, because of the growth and the revenues are much larger the players are now getting a smaller percentage of a larger pot.

“Under the last deal the players’ salaries grew collectively at about $65-70 million per year and under the current deal the salaries will still grow at about $100 million per year collectively. The idea is that by the sixth year of this deal the average salary should be up around $7 million where it’s currently at $5.6 – 5.7 million.”

The 2011 Lockout and its Critics

When asked about the criticism that he faced during the lockout, Hunter stated, “There’s no question that I took a lot of hits. There aren’t many blacks in leadership positions especially in sports. I don’t expect it to be easy and nobody ever told me that it would be. Fortunate enough for me the kind of experience I’ve had prepared me for this.”

He went on to say, “In my case it’s all about doing the job and it’s not about me; that’s the problem when you get too far in front and it becomes you then you have a problem. I think the players know with me it’s all about the relationship with the players; they know, trust and respect me. That’s why we were able to do what we did.”

“I’m sure the owner’s didn’t appreciate the stance that I took and a lot of people didn’t think I would do the things that I did. I think as the deal goes on it will turn out to be a lot better than people portray,” said Hunter.

Disclaiming Union Interest and Attorney David Boies

Hunter explained that up until 1995 you didn’t have to dissolve a union in order to sue an employer in federal court and assert antitrust rights. In 1995, it was ruled that unions had to decertify and you couldn’t be a union and sue. Once you decertify then the question is recertification; if it works and convinces the owners to come to the table – great, but if it doesn’t you’re in trouble.

“We are being pressured to decertify in July and I am saying no way we haven’t negotiated to the impasse so we are going to continue to negotiate,” he said.

Hunter shared that the agents were saying the only leverage that he had was decertification, which meant to dissolve the union. They thought there’s no way that the players could withstand and hang as long as the owners because the owners’ wealth and sooner or later they would break the players.

“We knew that another issue to get over was ‘sham decertification.’ You just can’t decertify because you’re trying to leverage management, and if you’re doing it for that purpose it is illegal and the court will look through it.”

Hunter and the players opted for federal mediation, which didn’t work; and they filed an action before the National Labor Relations Board, but the matter was held up while federal appointments were still being made.

Eventually, Commissioner Stern issued the take it or leave ultimatum and that meant the negotiations were over. Hunter explained that rather than decertifying they disclaimed, because decertifying means that your union is barred by law from reconstituting for at least 12 months.

Hunter admits that he surprised everyone when he brought in attorney David Boise, and many were wondering how he did that.

Hunter told the story of meeting with a legal colleague who he hadn’t seen in years and offered to call Boies to see if he was available and interested to join the civil case. Hunter acknowledged that he thought of Boise, but he knew that he most recently represented the NFL owners during their civil litigation.

After a series of secret meetings, Hunter recalls Boies saying that he had been following the labor situation and he thought it was unfair situation, they have all of the weapons and you need me to help level the playing field. “When Boies came into the case it made a difference,” added Hunter.

The Next Chapter

Hunter stated that he has never given any thought to his legacy as the NBAPA executive director; he said that he always focuses on real time.

Good Night Sports Fans, 


A Linderella Story – Jeremy Lin Shines On The NBA’s Brightest Stage

If you haven’t heard by now, there’s a NBA newcomer who is shining on one of the biggest stages in professional sports – Madison Square Garden. Jermey Lin, a product of Palo Alto and Harvard University, has taken the NBA and the New York Knicks by storm. He’s an undrafted free agent who had stints with the Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets and the NBA’s Developmental League.

How did he get to New York? Well it’s quite simple. The Knicks had limited backcourt options options and Lin seized his golden opportunity.

Whether it’s Lin-sane, Lin-sanity or Lin-credible there’s no denying that this is a truly amazing feel-good underdog story.

Blake’s Best Dunk: Mozgov or Perkins?

Wow, it’s deja vu all over again! I’m sure you’ve heard by now that LA Clipper, Blake Griffin, gave a repeat performance of the MONSTER dunk he threw down last year on Mozgov.

This season supporting actor in the dunk of the year goes to OKC’s Kendrick Perkins. Yes, this is a nightmare for Perkins – no one wants to be on receiving end of a dunk like this. But you have to admit that dunk was amazing.

Who else is loving this dunk? Other than Clipper’s fans, I’m sure Clippers owner Donald Sterling is still smiling ear-to-ear.

Here’s footage of both dunks. Which one is best? You be the judge.

Good Night Sports Fans, 


Who Dunked The Best? Vince Carter vs. LeBron James

Did you see LeBron James’ dunk over John Lucas?

Yes, it was incredible and it will be on highlight reels for seasons to come. But when I saw that dunk, the first thing that popped into my head was Vince Carter’s dunk in the 2000 Olympics.

Do you remember that? Vince stole the ball, took off just below the free throw line and then dunked one-handed over a seven foot center from France. Yes, he earned the nickname Half-Man Half-Amazing.

As nasty as LeBron’s dunk was today, I still think Vince has the crown – hands down.

Here are the videos…you be the judge.