NBA / Apr 14, 2010 / 4:48 pm

10 Best Open-Court NBA Dunkers

Josh Smith (photo. Blake Peterson)

Ever since the true superstars (for the most part) stopped competing in the All-Star Weekend dunk contest, the crown of “NBA’s Best Dunker” has been decided on the court, in actual games, without the benefit of judges and a scoring system. And with that, we really began to see the difference between those who excel in dunking on people, and those who can rouse (or hush) the crowd when they’re all alone.

In last night’s Bulls/Celtics game, Derrick Rose pulled off what I called the Uncontested Dunk of the Year: a reverse windmill two-hander that was even more incredible for its speed and power in mid-air. The announcers compared it to Scottie Pippen‘s signature dunks, but I don’t remember Pip doing anything that vicious.

Rose’s best in-game dunks have usually involved him dunking on somebody — Goran Dragic, Greg Oden, etc. — but last night he put himself on the list of premier open-court dunkers. The rest of the Top 10…

1. Andre Iguodala
2. Josh Smith
3. Rudy Gay
4. LeBron James
5. Jason Richardson
6. Derrick Rose
7. Gerald Wallace
8. Shannon Brown
9. DeMar DeRozan
10. J.R. Smith

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  • http://facebook.com/Mr.Brogden Mr. Brogden

    no particular order…all of these dudes made me text my homies at least one time : “YO DID U C DAT ISH?!?”


  • Rizwan

    Whats with the other list? Is it honorable mentions or bad editing?

  • stillanetsfan

    Terrence Williams for sure is right there too

  • Talented

    Definitely Rudy and Iggy

  • Lionheart


  • Mike Mihalow

    I rarely see enough open-court dunks to make an honest list of players.

  • bigdoggchad

    Serious about LeBron? He does the same one handed tomahawk every time.

  • hahns

    jrich shoulndt be in there b/c he blows critical dunks

    and i used to hate lebrons tomahawk- but ive come to appreciate it now- def should be on the list. when he’s running full speed the court just looks shorter. its really amazing.

  • sh!tfaced

    He may not be the most stylish but when you read the words open court and dunker, Amare immediately comes to mind

  • RC

    In game dunkers without Amare???? common man you should know better. And also Lebron has to be here he is the only player to switch hand in mid air and still dunk it with a defender all over him.

    Shannon Brown definitely has hops but he only dunks on a break away and its always a one hand tomahawk. Great hops but cant dunk when defense is present.

  • Dan

    “Serious about LeBron? He does the same one handed tomahawk every time.”

    thats true hahahaha. monster dunk but the same thing most of the time.

  • http://www.couriernewculture.blogspot.com Travis

    Uh, Andre Miller.

  • Strange

    I think the list is really close to mine, but J-Rich is close to going from number 5 to unranked, due to his recent shenanigans. Iggy and Rudy do those dunks that make you grind your teeth and grimace. T-Will may replace J-Rich or Gerald Wallace by this time next year. Yeah, right now put D-Wade in for Gerald, and T-Will should have enough highlights by next year. J-Rich got ONE MO blown dunk before I remove him!

  • Skeez

    yeah what happened to Wade?!? He did the same dunk Rose did the other night in Philly cept Rose’s just looked nastier

  • Al

    Jason Richarson fell off hard, this is 2010.

    Vince Carter could still take some people on that list without trying too much.

  • Ben1en

    No paticular order:
    VC, Iggy, Lebron, Rose, Wade, JR, J-Smoove, Shannon Brown, Rudy, and TWIll’s are pretty nice. Pretty much I agree with this list, this is an interesting question.

  • derek

    vince carter = best in game dunker of all time

    but yesa i agree lebron with time and more creatve dunks could overtake vince. but for now come one man, yall forget what he did to the 7’2 french dude? this guy was so embarassed he didnt play in nba? how about vince on alonzo mourning? tim duncan? not to mention he has the nastiest windmill.

  • Randomized

    Tony Allen? He can tear his knee open court, after whistle

  • http://250aspirin.blogspot.com DJ Leon Smith

    No spot on the list for Drew Bogut?

  • icey

    What ingame freeway dunks did DeRozan do that was ill?

    and Jrich shud be taken off the list after Lebron destroyed his 360

  • rick773

    Why does everybody keep going off subject? They said open court dunkers not in game dunkers. Read people damn it.

  • http://www.getbuckets.anywhere.com Chicagorilla

    Terrance Willams, nuff said.

  • trenton

    Not mentioning Terrance Williams on the best dunker list is a crime. Dude has crazy explosiveness and athleticism. He’s probably in the top 3 in terms of dunking.

  • oww

    as much as i agree with ya’ll campaigning for t-will, dude still plays for the nets. expect him to catch some fade guys. lol bright future though, my fav player on my lowly swamprats.

  • snowzerd

    open court dunkers dumbasses. definitely lebron #1 though. he has the handles and athleticism to get more open run dunks than anybody in the nba

  • Alex “Robocop” Murphy

    What about Jason Richardson? Remember he tried to pull off the 360 and lebron blocked him. That was sick!

  • Student Of The Game

    wow… i am so shocked that Dime didn’t ride Lebron again to the number 1 spot on this list… and this is a list that he could actually be number 1 on too hahaha.