Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Get To Know Derrick Jones Jr., The Slam Dunk Contest's Mystery Man

Photo: John Locher/AP
Photo: John Locher/AP

Derrick Jones Jr. has played all of 11 minutes for the Phoenix Suns. In that time, he’s made one layup, hit one free throw, and committed one personal foul. Jones has spent most of his time in the D-League where he’s been playing 32 minutes a night and averaging 15 points and 6 boards. Not the most impressive basketball credentials, but the Dunk Contest cares not for basketball credentials (word to Nate Robinson). Thank goodness Jones, who is only 19, has played those 11 minutes, because he is one of the most electric dunkers in basketball today. Earl Watson called him, “the most athletic player on our team,” which is saying something since Marquese Chriss is also on the Suns.

Even when he was in high school, Jones was the subject of YouTube highlight videos such as “BROOO!! HE DUNKED ON 4 PEOPLE!!! DERRICK JONES HIGH SCHOOL ELITEMIXTAPES REACTION” and “Derrick Jones Is The BEST Dunker In The Country! SICK Dunk Session,” both of which absolutely deliver. The rookie played one season of college ball for UNLV, where he routinely dunked on everyone’s heads and does that cool thing that almost nobody does where he extends his dunking arm all the way out before slamming it.


He received the Bill Walton seal of approval.

You will not be surprised to learn that he has continued to bring down the hammer (dunk term) in the D-League.

Jones will go up against established dunkers Aaron Gordon and DeAndre Jordan, as well as fellow debutante Glenn Robinson III. Even Robinson has more of a profile than Jones, but don’t be fooled. The teen can get up as well as anyone, and I can’t wait to see what he does.

Staff writer, Deadspin

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