Beyond the Surface

Digging Deeper into the Mind

Getting Dunked On

Fingers are pointed, laughs are boisterous, and a sense of embarrassment often fills a basketball player when he gets dunked on. I previously wrote about the reaction to Guard Brandon Knight getting dunked on by Center DeAndre Jordan.

Having worked with basketball players at the high school, college, and pro level I have noticed that the “getting dunked on” phenomenon is something that exists at all levels of basketball. The act of dunking on someone should have more to do with the dunker rather than the player who was dunked on, yet players around the country often focus on the defender.

After the Jordan dunk, NBA players took to twitter to voice their opinion:

Harrison Barnes, the rookie starting Small Forward for Golden State said, “Why jump B Knight?”

LeBron James said, “Hey coach Spo I'm gone have to just give those 2 pts up!! Hahahaha! Damn Brandon Knight. Gots to he more careful!”

Shelvin Mack, who recently signed a 10-day contract with the Atlanta Hawks said, “Why did he jump?”

Brandon Rush, who has played 2 games this year due to a season ending injury said, “Brandon Knight, no bro.”

Knight, who graduated from high school with a 4.3 PGA and was the Gatorade National Player of the Year, took the ribbing by his peers in stride by making light of the dunk. He also took the ball to the hoop on the very next possession and got to the foul line, where he made 2 free throws.

The perception that Knight did something wrong by making an attempt to block a shot is crazy to me. He was simply doing his job by playing defense. Great players are willing to take risks and fail. What if the 6-3 Point Guard was able to block the 7-foot Center? Surely that would have been impressive, and more importantly, it would have stopped 2 points from going in the basket.

It is with that in mind that I decided to lookup some of the greatest basketball players of all time and see if they’ve been dunked on. I found footage of Jordan, Barkley, Duncan, Ewing, Mutombo, O’Neil, Wade, Bryant, and James all getting dunked on. You can checkout my video here …..

So it turns out that Knight is actually in quite good company. And maybe, just maybe, he took his first step toward greatness. So the next time a guy gets dunked on, how about we give praise to not only the dunker, but also the player who was dunked on. After all, it certainly is an act work acknowledging, but for completely different reasons.

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