Sun, February 26, 2012
Sports > Basketball

NBA All-Star: Evans wins slam dunk, Love shoots down three-point contest

2012-02-26 02:55:20 GMT2012-02-26 10:55:20(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Minnesota Timberwolves' Kevin Love shoots during the NBA All-Star Three-Point Shootout basketball competition in Orlando, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 25, 2012. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Jeremy Evans of the Utah Jazz jumps over teammate Gordon Haywood as he dunks two balls during the Slam Dunk Contest at the 2012 NBA All-Star Weekend on February 25. (AFP Photo/Mike Ehrmann)

ORLANDO, Florida (Xinhua) -- Utah's Jeremy Evans won the Slam Dunk Contest at the NBA's All-Star Saturday night with a support of 29 percent text message votes from three million fans.

Timberwolves' power forward Kevin Love beat out Oklahoma City star Kevin Durant to win the 3-Point Shootout in a 17-14 tiebreaker.

Evans, who got into the competition as a replacement for injured New York guard Iman Shumpert, earned the win over Houston's Chase Budinger, Indiana's Paul George and Minnesota's Derrick Williams.

Evans dunked with a camera on his head, dunked two basketballs while jumping over a seated assistant and then donned a Karl Malone jersey while dunking over mailman-dressed comedian Kevin Hart.

"Just me playing for the Jazz right now, I feel that's huge," said Evans. "I feel like Karl Malone, Stockton, those are pretty good players for the Jazz, two of the best. I just feel that I should do than."

This year's contest lasted three rounds, but the four participants had only two minutes per round to complete a single dunk.

This was the first year that fans had total control of voting, a major tweak from past competitions.

The former UCLA star was consistent throughout, but had to survive a tiebreaker in the first round over Miami Heat's Mario Chalmers.

Heat's James Jones led the first round in 22, but faded to 12 in the second round, in which he had a good chance to beat the other two in 16 level.

Love is in the middle for a breakout year for Minnesota, averaging 25 points and 9.9 rebounds a game. But he also has connected on 49 of 141 3-point attempts for Minnesota.

"I'm a guy that loves to rebound the ball, a guy that loves to play inside, really a physical player. But for me, coming into the league, I was told not to shoot three-point shots," said Love.

"So to be here where I am now and continue to work on my game, I think this definitely speaks to my versatility. I think I'll just continue to improve year in and year out."

San Antonio point guard Tony Parker then won the Skills Competition. Parker and New Jersey's Deron Williams both went through the first round in one effort, but Williams set the pace with 28.3, a little better than Park's 29.2 with the other four participants breaking 30 seconds.

Park's time of 32.8 in the final run on the obstacle course was better than Boston's Rajon Rondo (34.6) and Williams (41.4), who need five attempts to bury the top of key shot.

"The first time I did it, I was with Jason Kidd and Gary Payton and I was nervous," said Parker. "Because coming from Europe and from France and everything was big. And then in 2009 I was just bad."

"This year, I was a lot better. And I have to say, Cheryl Miller (the TNT reporter, a former WNBA player) called it the right before the competition. She said, 'Third time's a charm, you need to win this one'."

Team New York had the touch from the outside and won the Shooting Stars event. Former Knicks star Allan Houston nailed his third attempt at a half-court shot to give his team consisting of current Knicks guard Landry Fields and Cappie Pondexter of the WNBA's New York Liberty the victory.


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