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Best NBA Highlight Of The Year: J.R. Smith vs. Dwyane Wade vs. Blake Griffin

This season, we were gifted with so many amazing highlight plays, that it’s tough to decide just which one is the clear-cut favorite. Between buzzer beaters, trick shots and Blake Griffin being Blake Griffin, it’s been a crazy year. So, in the interest of being able to relive more of that awesomeness, I’m sticking with my top-3.

The highlight hierarchy is always a matter of opinion, but for myself, all three of this season’s best highlights were right where they should’ve been: Above the rim. Yes, you can make a strong case for the D-Wade/LeBron full-court oop connection, Tyreke Evans‘ half-court game winner against Memphis or really anything that Derrick Rose has done this year (His block on James Johnson…yeesh), but these plays below made me make noises that even I didn’t know I could make. They conformed my face into poses that even my girlfriend couldn’t love out of good faith. They were that nasty and that fierce, that I needed to freeze-frame each millisecond just to comprehend that a human just did that. They were… Alright, alright, you get the point; the memories are all flooding back to my mind.

Here you go:

J.R. Smith Welcomes Gary Neal To The Mile High City

Conservatively, I may have watched this dunk 50 times. Maybe more. For starters, Denver’s J.R. Smith absolutely destroyed San Antonio’s Gary Neal on this slam, but what shouldn’t get overlooked is the call. “We just saw a man fly,” from announcer Kevin Harlan couldn’t have been described any sweeter. The cowboy line is another thing entirely, but damn, J.R. destroyed the Spurs’ rookie! In fact, legend has it that as Smith was drifting through the air, he actually had enough time to tweet about the dunk before he reached the rim.* For my money, this was one of the best in-game dunks I’ve ever seen.

(*Due to the NBA’s Twitter policy, this may not be factually correct.)

Dwyane Wade Isn’t Impressed With OKC’s Acquisition of Kendrick Perkins

The game is beautiful sometimes. And when Dwyane Wade can spin off his baseline dribble into a two-handed tomahawk aimed to finish directly on top of one of the NBA’s most imposing centers, it’s definitely a thing of beauty. The fluidity from which he picks up his dribble until he bams it home, his pop-up afterwards and the reaction from the booth – all magic.

Blake Griffin Doesn’t Care Much For Other Rookies

Obviously. This doesn’t really need much of an explanation, does it? Fine. This is when then-Knicks rookie, Timofey Mozgov, was welcomed to the mainstream media at the hands of LAC’s Blake Griffin. Mozgov’s YouTube video will live on forever and entertain millions of children and adults the world over. He will always bring a few moments of happiness to people’s lives and allow them to escape their otherwise dunkless existences. Actually, when you come to think about it, Mozgov’s really the hero in all of this. Without him, we’re just a bunch of highlight-less sad faces walking around empty inside. Sure, Blake was there, but Mozgov, Mozgov was the star. We should all thank T-Moz for helping out the greater good.

What do you think? What was your favorite highlight this season?

Follow Jack on Twitter at @jensenjack.

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