On Saturday night, he became the center of the basketball world as he was crowned NBA Slam Dunk champion in Salt Lake City, scoring a perfect 50 for three of his four dunks, and capping a week in which he signed a two-way contract with the Sixers.
“The crowd was really amazing tonight,” McClung told CNN’s Andy Scholes afterward. “It was a blessing. It’s really cool man. I mean I’ll be able to tell my kids and brag about it one day. But yeah, the goal is to play in the NBA. I’m gonna keep working every day. I’m very hungry and I’m resilient so I’m gonna keep working.”
For his first dunk, McClung jumped over a friend sitting on another friend’s shoulders, picked the ball out of his hands, tapped the backboard, and finished with a reverse slam for an instant, perfect 50 from the judges.
The second was a 360 pirouette two-handed dunk, and he advanced to the final alongside Trey Murphy III of the New Orleans Pelicans.
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Pulling out all the tricks, he secured another perfect 50 for leaping over another person and dunking it in the net, before he sealed victory with a 540 dunk, completing one-and-a-half turns in the air.
Such incredible dunks from the 6ft 2in guard drew the admiration of NBA legends, as he became the shortest player since 1986 to rack up three perfect scores, according to ESPN.
“Man was a viral HOH high school dunk phenom, still working his way to the League, but lemme go get that dunk contest trophy right quick and bring it back to life!!! Unreal,” Steph Curry tweeted. “He saved the dunk contest,” Shaquille O’Neal said.
The 24-year-old became the first 76ers to win the NBA’s slam dunk contest and his new team was also blown away by his perfomance
“y’all asked “who is Mac McClung?” NOW YOU KNOW,” the 76ers tweeted.
Meanwhile, Portland Trailblazers guard Damian Lillard won the three-point contest while donning his alma mater’s jersey – Weber State University. The hometown Utah Jazz trio of Jordan Clarkson, Walker Kessler, and Collin Sexton won the skills challenge.
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