It’s a monthly ritual. At some point, I’ll be on YouTube looking up old J-Will clips or replaying some sick Game Of Thrones scene and I’ll be recommended — you know… the list on the right side — to watch the top 100 Vince Carter dunk tape. Then for the next 10 minutes, you can’t talk to me. You can’t get my attention. You can’t get me to lift my eyes.
It happened again recently, and an idea sprouted from it: how many times has VC dunked on a famous Georgetown center? It has to be more than a few times, right? So I looked it up, dug through as many YouTube videos as I could find, and came up with this list.
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8. 2005-06 – VINCE CARTER Tells ALONZO To Take A Seat
Remember when Vince Carter was traded midseason from Toronto to New Jersey and all of a sudden, he had his hops back? He was dunking everything, spiking alley-oops from Jason Kidd on the break, upping his numbers from 16/3/3 on 41 percent shooting to 28/6/5 on 48 percent shooting almost overnight, and flowing from behind the arc? That rebirth went on for a few years and Alonzo Mourning got caught on the wrong end of a bunch of VC highlights. Here’s one in the season after the deal that ended with the Hoya on his ass.
7. 1998-99 – VINCE CARTER Asks ALONZO MOURNING To Please Stop Jumping
I feel sorry for so many of these young cats out here who never really got the chance to see the young Vince Carter. YouTube doesn’t do him justice. They can’t remember what it felt like to wake up at 6:00 a.m. every day for an entire lockout season to catch a full hour of SportsCenter knowing that it would all be worth it for just one VC highlight. Shit, even back in college he was a must-watch. I still cherish an old VHS tape I have from a UNC/UConn tournament game. Carter got out on the break and threw down a nasty 360. He never disappointed.
6. 1998-99 – VINCE CARTER Tomahawks It On The Baseline Against DIKEMBE MUTOMBO
Here’s that rookie VC again. Mutombo will show up later in this list, and although I’m not certain if this is from the same game, it’s very possible it was. As Jeff Van Gundy said recently, 95 percent of good NBA teams will force players to the baseline. Well, that was bad news against Carter, who could finish on either side and is probably, at worst, tied as the greatest baseline dunker ever with Kobe Bryant.
The more I think about it, those two were really the only ones — Jordan was more likely to reverse layup you to death and Dominique loved taking the middle anyway, even when you cut him off — who consistently finished with jams on both sides of the rim along the baseline.
5. 2009-10 – VINCE CARTER Catches ROY HIBBERT Day Dreaming
Old Vince! Carter will probably be able to dunk until he’s 60. The man’s hand-eye coordination is that good. He has enormous hands, and a ridiculously long wingspan. But it’s still surprising when he goes back in time on the hardwood. Even better in this one is watching a young Roy Hibbert struggled to move at all in the lane. He wasn’t always dominating defensively in the Eastern Conference Finals.
4. 2005-06 – VINCE CARTER Gets Angry At The Rim And ‘ZO In The Playoffs
For two-straight years in the mid-2000s, the Heat and Nets faced off in the playoffs. Think of all the big names they had: Shaq, D-Wade, Kidd, J-Will, ‘Zo, Antoine Walker, Kenyon Martin. And Vince. Too bad we always knew that no matter what New Jersey did, they’d end up losing it in the end. They did just that, dropping eight out of nine in back-to-back years against Miami.
Carter could never completely match an in-his-prime Wade, but every so often he’d reach back into his holster and unleash something nasty. Mourning was routinely a casualty.
3. 1999-2000 – VINCE CARTER Makes PATRICK EWING Look Like An Old Man
Sadly, I don’t remember much about this game or this dunk, or whether this video came from the regular season or playoffs. But those old Raptors/Knicks postseason series were a lot of fun. They met in back-to-back years in the playoffs in 2000 and 2001, with New York taking the first matchup in a sweep and Toronto winning the last two games in 2001 to take the second meeting.
While I’ll always remember that 2000 Eastern Conference First Round series as the origins of my T-Mac obsession, I’ll also remember it for how up and down Carter was. In his first playoff game ever, he was awful: 3-for-20 for 16 points. Yep, 3-for-20. That was right after I promised everyone in my family he was going to be the next Jordan. This dunk didn’t come during that game, but at least Carter topped Jordan in one regard: dunking.
2. 1998-99 – VINCE CARTER Throws A “Welcome To The NBA” Party For Himself On DIKEMBE MUTOMBO’s Head
As I stated earlier in this piece, that lockout season in 1998-99 was special, a merging of the old school with the future. Still, it’ll be remembered for only three things: the way Jason Williams and Vince Carter dominated the nightly highlight reels in a time before advanced stats, League Pass and YouTube; fat Shawn Kemp; and Larry Johnson‘s “LJ.”
This particular facial on Mutombo was one of Carter’s original highlights, one of the very first to find its way into a 16-bit video on NBA.com. I’ll never forget it and I don’t think Tracy McGrady will, either. He was nearly crying on the bench. Ah, the good ol’ days.
1. 2005-06 – VINCE CARTER Unleashes One Of The Greatest Dunks Ever On ALONZO MOURNING
As if you expected anything else…
This was Carter toying with the competition, enticing Jason Williams to go after the loose ball before pulling the okie-doke, and then wrapping it back around his back. He wasn’t finished though. Oh, is that you, ‘Zo? You’re trying to send me back at the rim? Again? Let me pull this one back behind me shoulder. Sorry, man. Boom.
I always laugh at Richard Jefferson‘s reaction, who must’ve had the best view of anyone. At first, he has no idea what to do and is in complete shock. Then it hits him, he starts fist pumping and he’s all, “Ohhh sh**! Hell yeah!”
Did we miss any?
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