It was a battle that ended in conspiracy, tiebreakers, unbelievable dunks, and more: Miami Heat’s Derrick Jones Jr. won the NBA dunk contest in a neck-and-neck battle with Orlando Magic’s Aaron Gordon.
After two tie-breaking dunk-offs, the judges awarded Jones Jr. the victory– a decision they claimed afterward was made in error: “We thought it was going to be tied. We were like, ‘This is a tie!'” Common, who was judging for the event, told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne. “But somebody didn’t do it right. I don’t know who it is.”
Candace Parker, who was also on the judges’ panel, confirmed they had intended the second dunk-off to end in a tie as well.
The final score was decided after Jones Jr. earned a 48 for a free throw line (close enough) windmill dunk and Gordon notched only a 47 for dunking over 7-foot-5 Boston Celtics rookie Tacko Fall.
“I did four straight 50s — five straight 50s,” Gordon said. “That’s over. It’s a wrap. Let’s go home. Four 50s in a row in an NBA dunk contest, it’s over. But I don’t know. Who’s running the show?
“It’s a wrap, bro,” he said. “I feel like I should have two trophies.”
The NBA All-Star Game tips off Sunday at 8:00 PM EST.