Mac McClung Wins 2nd Straight NBA Slam Dunk Contest At All-Star Weekend

Mac McClung, NBA Dunk Contest
Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Mac McClung showcased his extraordinary dunking skills to clinch his second straight NBA Slam Dunk Contest title, marking a memorable moment involving basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal in his winning dunk.

Donning McClung’s old high school jersey, O’Neal played a part in the contest’s highlight, with McClung executing a flawless jump over him, securing unanimous top scores from the judges on his final dunk. This performance helped McClung edge out Boston Celtics’ Jaylen Brown with a final score of 98.8 to Brown’s 97.8.

McClung’s interaction with O’Neal added a personal touch to the contest, highlighting the camaraderie and support among basketball’s elite.

“Shaq was so cool to put that high school jersey on, man, it almost made me emotional that he would do that,” McClung said. “When he put it on, he said, ‘You better not miss it.’ I said, ‘OK, I won’t miss it.’”

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Mac McClung, Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics Updates

This victory etched McClung’s name alongside multiple Slam Dunk champions, making him the first since Zach LaVine to win consecutively in 2015 and 2016. The question of aiming for a third consecutive title remains open for McClung, who has also led his team to a G League championship.

“I don’t know. We’ll think about it,” McClung said. “I’m not sure yet.”

The competition was stiff, with Jaylen Brown paying homage to Terrence Clark, a promising young player whose life was tragically cut short. McClung’s decision to bring O’Neal onto the court for his final dunk raised the stakes, necessitating a dunk that had to impress and be executed perfectly on the first attempt.

“It was like, ‘OK, you’ve really got to bring something, and I think they want us to make our dunks on the first try, which I completely understand,” McClung said. “So I knew it was time to lock in for the finals.”

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Mac McClung, Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics Updates

McClung’s successful dunk over O’Neal, combined with his previous high-scoring performance, secured his victory and reinforced his status as one of the most exciting dunkers in basketball today.

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