Utah Jazz's Jeremy Evans added to NBA All-Star dunk contest
SALT LAKE CITY â The NBA announced today that Utah Jazz forward Jeremy Evans has been added to the 2012 Sprite Slam Dunk that will be held on Feb. 25 at Amway Center in Orlando (TNT, 6 p.m. MT). Evans joins a group of three other players in the Slam Dunk that features a series of firsts, including four first-time participants, a new single-round format in which the winner will be chosen solely by fan vote, and the introduction of fan voting via Twitter. A 2010 second-round draft pick (55th overall) out of Western Kentucky, 61 of Evans' 88 made shots over his first two years have been dunks, 30 of those on alley-oops. His dunk percentage of 69.3 percent is the highest in the NBA over the last two seasons. The 6-9, 194-pound high-riser owns career averages of 3.2 points and 1.7 rebounds per game. Evans becomes the sixth player in Jazz history selected to participate in the event, joining Darrell Griffith (1984, 1985), Blue Edwards (1990, 1991), David Benoit (1993), Jamie Watson (1995) and DeShawn Stevenson (2001). In addition to Evans, the three other players who will vie for the Sprite Slam Dunk championship include the Houston Rockets' Chase Budinger, the Indiana Pacers' Paul George and the Minnesota Timberwolves' Derrick Williams. A new format will be implemented for the 2012 competition. The contest will consist of only one round and each competitor will execute three dunks. Fan voting will open after all four players have completed their first dunk. Previously, the Sprite Slam Dunk contest consisted of two rounds, with the first round scored by a panel of judges which determined two finalists. Beginning this year, only fan voting will be utilized in determining the winner and voting also will expand to social media. For the first time ever, fans will be able to cast votes on Twitter by posting a corresponding letter assigned to each dunker along with the hashtag #SpriteSlam. Since 2008, fans have determined the winner of the Sprite Slam Dunk through SMS TXT and voting on NBA.com as part of the "They Dunk. You Decide" campaign. The Sprite Slam Dunk is part of NBA All-Star 2012, which also includes the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge, NBA All-Star Saturday Night presented by State Farm featuring the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest, Haier Shooting Stars and Taco Bell Skills Challenge; NBA All-Star Jam Session; and the 61st NBA All-Star Game.