So, my heart is just starting to return to a normal rate since seeing Wilson Chandler decapitate JaVale McGee with a reverse tomahawk jam. Since everyone's been buzzing about the dunk, and where this dunk should rank, let's take a trip down memory lane and reflect on some of the greater dunks in Knicks history (dunk contests not included). Jump... but don't be surprised if you end up on a poster!
Let's start with most recent:
Chandler reverse dunk on JaVale McGee: The best part is that Mike Crispino has a Gus Johnsonesque reaction. Of course if Gus was doing this game, he would have spewed pieces of his voice box all over the microphone.
Gallo on Roy Hibbert: The best part is Gallo's landing pose.
Trevor Ariza pounds the ball on Andres Nocioni's face: The best part was definitely the pass. Jamal Crawford was leading the fast break. He went hard to the basket causing every defender to collapse on him, and then at the last second he flipped the ball over his head without looking to Ariza who made Nocioni swallow every last bit of it.
(Ariza had another nasty one on Ben Wallace, but I'm pretty sure the Knicks stunk that game, and the play was awesome but insignificant).
Latrell Sprewell's two handed smash on the Spurs during the finals(someone in the comments remind who the defender was): The best part was the sheer anger in Sprewell's face when he dropped the crushing blow, and then the way he goes towards the crowd with burning eyes and sends the fans into a frenzy.
Shout out to S.Bucketz for reminding me about this one:
Marcus Camby bangs it over Tim Duncan during that same 99 finals: The best part was that Camby remarkably did not get injured on the play. What a great run that was!
Patrick Ewing's full frontal facial on Alonzo Mourning in the 97 playoffs. No gimmicks, no defender coming to help late. Patrick gets the ball, sizes up Zo, and then destroys Zo's masculinity on his way to tearing down the rim: The best part was the fact that this dunk sealed a playoff win against a hated rival, and the Big Fella was already starting to be kind of old. We just didn't think he could do that anymore.
Patrick Ewing's steal the ball at half-court, and then takes it to the rack himself almost jumping over Dennis Rodman for the one handed stuff. He did clip one of Rodman's shoulders as he went through/over him, and landed awkwardly on his hip. Ewing, ever tough and rugged, would walk it off: The best part was the crowds reaction behind the basket. They explode out of their seats and it looks as though they are trying to will their fallen hero to his feet with praise and adoration.
Patrick Ewing's put-back slam against the Pacers in game seven of the 94 conference finals: Should this one really count? It wasn't a poster on anyone. Still, a dunk that sends a beloved franchise and it's long-suffering hero to the NBA finals has to be one of the greats.
John Starks, "the dunk" over Horace Grant, Michael Jordan, and whoever else you hated in the 90's: The best part... EVERYTHING. This was literally one of the best moments of my life. I remember leaping in the air and screaming until spit sprayed all over the TV. It was like Starks took all the pain and frustration that Knicks fans had felt at the hands of Jordan, balled it up, and rammed it down Chicago's windy throat. Beautiful.
Bernand King's putback dunk against the Pistons in game 5 of a best of 5 playoff series: This is as far back as my fandom goes. Actually, the Knicks played a sub-par game that night, but King just would not stop dragging them to the finish line. That dunk was a huge momentum changer that seemed to rally the other Knicks players out of their coma and into the second round. Isiah Thomas was on the Pistons that year, and unfortunately this dunk did not paralyze him and his ability to speak. He would survive and remember King's magnificent rebound slam, and come back to exact revenge on the Knicks posing as a GM and then a coach.
I missed out on the Willis Reed/ Walt Frazier championships (wasn't born yet), but if any of you older gentlemen can tell us about a great dunk from the days, that would be great.
I'm surprised as I reach the end of this post, that Nate did not make it on the list. I assumed he'd be there when I started out. I just can't remember him posterizing anyone, or dunking when it really mattered in regards to having a significant impact on the outcome of a game. I guess that sums up Nate's career with the Knicks though.
Okay fellas, leave a comment and tell me which great dunks I forgot to add. And if you're feeling brave... RANK 'EM!