Greatest In-Game Dunks in NBA History

Miami Heat v Sacramento Kings
Miami Heat v Sacramento Kings
Trent Bixby

Everyone loves a good, rim-rattling slam dunk. The crowd, the bench, even sometimes the coaches go wild when a player throws it down. When a spectacular dunk happens in an NBA game, it only amplifies the level of the slam. With hundreds, even thousands of dunks being made every year, the NBA's biggest stars are becoming more and more creative to stand out from the pack. In no particular order, here they are: the greatest in-game dunks in NBA history.

Scottie Pippen posterizes Patrick Ewing (1994)

In Game 6 of the NBA Eastern Conference Semifinals, Scottie Pippen and the dynastic Chicago Bulls faced off against the New York Knicks. Pippen received a pass from #20 Pete Myers just in front of the 3-point line, took a two-step gather, and extended over the outstretched Patrick Ewing for a massive, disrespectful dunk. He then added to the disrespect by stepping over Ewing and walking over to trash talk Knicks' superfan Spike Lee. The Bulls went on to win the game, 93-79.

DeAndre Jordan dunks over Brandon Knight (2013)

This is one of the most athletic in-game dunks from an NBA center you will ever see. DeAndre Jordan of the LA Clippers jumps for an alley-oop pass from Chris Paul, is met at the rim by Detroit Pistons guard Brandon Knight, and somehow extends to reach the rim and put Knight on the floor. Jordan's face after the dunk says it all.

Shawn Kemp Coming Through! (1992)

In the 1992 playoffs, the Seattle SuperSonics played the Golden State Warriors in the first round, with Seattle winning the series 3 games to 1. The most memorable play from this series came from Sonics forward Shawn Kemp, with his dunk over prolific shot-blocker Alton Lister of the Warriors. Kemp jumped well over the extending Lister, knocking him to the hardwood. When Kemp finished the jam, he landed right next to his victim, taunted him, and ran to the other end of the court.

Air Jordan, NBA's Finest (1991)

This is Patrick Ewing's second time on this list and not for the right reasons. After some fancy dribbling and footwork by Jordan, the Knicks center was the only thing between MJ and the rim. Jordan quickly gathers with two feet and throws down a mean one-handed jam over the fully extended Ewing. Even the opposing Knicks players could not contain their shock after this historic slam.

Wade to LeBron: "Are you not entertained?" (2010)

One of the most iconic in-game dunks of the decade, this Dwyane Wade no-look bounce pass to LeBron James slam was etched in to the NBA history books as soon as it happened. This was the beginning of the Heat's dominance, and it felt like no force in the world could stop them. They would go on to win the 2012 and 2013 NBA Finals.

Many other dunks could have made this list, but these five lived on well past their time, surviving in basketball infamy. Hopefully, the best in-game dunk in NBA history has yet to come. With the constantly improving sports technology and evolution of modern athletes, there is truly no telling what tricks the slam dunk artists of the future could have up their sleeves. For now, we can admire these big-time slams, and the fact that the bar is set pretty high for the next generation to come.


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