In the new issue of Dime Magazine, we took a look at the best – and worst – the game has offered since the turn of the century. From the players to jerseys to sneakers to teams to even trends, you can relive the past 12 years by scooping up the new issue currently on newsstands nationwide. In those pages, you’ll find the following feature…
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Magic Johnson might be convinced “The Dunk Contest is back!” but we know better. When the names Jeremy Evans, Chase Budinger, Paul George and Derrick Williams are as good as you can get, as they did in last year’s 2012 NBA Dunk Contest, it’s impossible to meet expectations. Those high standards are partially Jus Fly’s fault. He might not be an NBA player, but try finding one who can dunk better than him.
We ranked the NBA’s 10 greatest dunkers of the century earlier today. Now, get a look at the man who is probably better than all of them…
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Anthony Davis was in the house. So was Diana Taurasi. And the best basketball player in the world, the NBA Finals MVP, LeBron James, was there too. But even with those three all-world talents making up 60 percent of the judging panel of the regional Nike+ Basketball Dunk Showcase at this summer’s World Basketball Festival 2012, Justin Darlington was still the star. Darlington is only 6-4, he’s never played in the NBA, and he hails from Ajax, Ontario, not exactly a hotbed of basketball talent. But he has some hops. Serious hops.
“I’ve been doing a lot of contests for a few years now so now my approach is just go and create havoc,” says the man known as Jus Fly. “You can never really prepare for a dunk contest. It’s really how your body feels and like how the crowd is and everything with your competition. So I just come here not knowing what I’m going to do, not knowing any dunks I’m going to do, and just go from there.”
That Sunday night in Washington, D.C., Jus Fly blew the roof off the place by jumping over a 6-8 guy, grabbing the ball and then reversing the finish. He also pulled off his patented under-both-legs jam, as well as the famous between-the-legs cartwheel dunk. Jus Fly even attempted a 360, under-both-legs slam that would’ve shot us all 30 years into the future had he made it.
The former track and field star first surfaced around 2008 on TeamFlightBrothers’ YouTube channel, impressing everyone by hitting his head on rims and pushing the art of dunking to a new realm. Cartwheel dunks were never really cool thanks to Michael Finley, but Darlington changed all of that very quickly.
It didn’t take long for Jus Fly to hit the mainstream, seemingly introducing new dunks every few months. Even now, he’s still touring, still killing the competition in almost every dunk contest he enters. Before the Nike+ dunk contest at WBF, everyone wanted to know if there were any competitors who could give Darlington a run for his money. The promoters only laughed. They knew.
How does Jus Fly come up with all of his crazy dunks? He makes it sound easier than it looks.
“When it comes to new dunks, boredom helps,” he says. “When you’re bored, messing around with your friends, dunking with other people is a good thing too. It really helps you think of stuff and get creative.”
Many casual basketball fans want to see Jus Fly enter the NBA Dunk Contest. He says his favorite dunkers are Jason Richardson, Vince Carter, Blake Griffin, DeMar DeRozan and LeBron. Could any of those five beat him in a dunk contest? We doubt it.
Who is the absolute best dunker in the world?
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