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“Your Most Feared Opponent”: Lebron James Leaves Michael Jordan Out of His Top Dunkers List, Leaves NBA Fans Fuming

Published 05/18/2022, 12:24 AM EDT

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LeBron James is in hot water with NBA fans once again for leaving Michael Jordan out of his all-time top 4 dunk contestants list. To add insult to injury, LeBron put his own name on the list.

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The comparison between LeBron James and Michael Jordan is nothing new. Even though the two legends never played with or against each other, media and fans constantly pit them and their legacies against each other.

Jordan and James are two of the greatest basketball players of all time. And the conversation to decide the greatest player of all time generally revolves around these two legends.


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LeBron James likes to occasionally instigate the flame of this eternal debate between him and Jordan for the crown of basketball. Unsurprisingly, he grew up idolizing Michael Jordan, imitating and emulating his game, his moves, and even his pre-game rituals.

Therefore, it’s likely that he enjoys being compared to his childhood hero. But sometimes this healthy competition can raise eyebrows.

The 1988 slam-dunk contest

LeBron was asked on Twitter which 4 players he would choose for an all-time slam-dunk contest. He chose Vince Carter, Dominique Wilkins, Zach Levine, and himself.

NBA fans were not too impressed with the list. Because Michael Jordan defeated Dominique Wilkins in the 1988 slam-dunk contest.


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The 1988 slam-dunk contest was one of the most iconic moments in NBA history. Many believe that the competition somewhat propelled the NBA to its current fame and glory.

The sight of Jordan levitating in the air from the free-throw line for a slam dunk and Wilkin’s throwing down resounding windmill dunks created generations of NBA fans and inspired many great players.

Besides dunk contests, Jordan’s spectacular game-time dunks, like the famous cradle dunk against the Knicks at Madison Square Garden, will forever be remembered by NBA fans.

NBA fans angry at LeBron James for leaving out Michael Jordan

NBA fans were furious at LeBron for leaving out Michael Jordan and putting his name instead. Because even though nobody could deny LeBron’s dunking prowess, he’s the only one on the list who has never taken part in a dunk contest, let alone winning one.

Winning a dunk contest requires practice, dedication, and creativity. Intersentingly, Vince Carter’s performance in 2000 at the Garden was arguably the greatest in the history of the NBA slam-dunk contest.


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Carter single-handedly revived the dying popularity of the dunk contest with his reverse 360-degree windmill slam. It shocked fans all around the country and beyond.

Therefore, a lot of fans didn’t take LeBron just putting his name beside such stellar performers the right way.


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Written by:

Satagni Sikder


One take at a time

Satagni Sikder is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports. He has a Master's degree in English from Jadavpur University, Kolkata, and has been following the NBA since 2017. Moreover, he supports the Dallas Mavericks, and unsurprisingly, Luka Doncic is his favorite player.
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Edited by:

Ajinkya Aswale