A Tweet Slam Dunk

No one did it like MJ! Photo from Pinterest

My third Linky Love post is about a favorite topic of mine: basketball. This weekend is the All-Star Weekend for the National Basketball Association. It’s a time when every team takes a break from regular games and some players get elected to participate in certain events. This year the weekend is in Orlando, Florida.

Players can be voted into the All-Star game, the Dunk Contest, the Skills Challenge, the 3-Point Contest, Shooting Stars and The Rising Stars Challenge. The majority of these events find a winner easily depending on the score of the game or the amount of shots made. The Skills Challenge is an obstacle course so the fastest time wins. The Dunk Contest has always been the most intriguing of the events because the victor was decided on a panel of judges. Mostly NBA experts or past players, they judged each dunk on a numerical system.

This year, however, is a new year. The NBA, like the rest of the world, understands social media. They know that fans Tweet and post about the events and have opinions to share. The article I read today (by Sam Laird) talked about how, for the very first time, the Slam Dunk Contest won’t have a panel of judges. The winner will be decided by you, the fans. Email, Tweet, and text who you think should win…and they very well could.

I’ve played basketball all my life and have been an NBA fan since I can remember. Immediately I see a couple problems with this new method. Sure, it’s innovative and it involves the fans like they’ve never been involved before. But we aren’t experts (as much as we wish we were). We are swayed by popular opinion. The writer joked that thank goodness Knick’s point guard Jeremy Lin wasn’t competiting. He’s right…that guy is so popular right now for how he’s performed in the past seven games that people would probably say he’s the best dunker for no reason at all. Also, if you’re a diehard fan for a certain team you may only vote for the dunker who represents your team. Or on the flip, you may hate a candidate for being on a rival team. Neither of those reasons have anything to do with the quality of the dunks that these men will be doing.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure excited to watch this contest. I may just Tweet about it!