A Dunk Is Born
Giannis Antetokounmpo has pulled off the first ever SkyDunk.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, the 20-year-old forward for the Milawuke Bucks, has electrified the league in just a season and a half, going from an unknown to a human highlight reel known as the “Greek Freak.” Well, Antetokounmpo can stick another feather in his cap, because he’s actually gone ahead and invented a new dunk. And it looks unstoppable.
Last night, in a game against Phoenix, Antetokounmpo took a pass on the wing and drove towards the middle of the lane. In many situations, a big man will either pass off from there, or, if they’re feeling lucky, attempt a skyhook. The skyhook, popularized by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, is a difficult, but incredibly valuable shot, as it is almost impossible to defend. The shooter curls their arm outward, away from the defender, and lightly flings the ball towards the basket. It is one of the most unorthodox shots in the game, and tough to master, which is one reason Abdul-Jabbar was so good for so long.
In this play, it looks like Antetokounmpo is about to attempt the skyhook, but wait! Instead of letting the ball go, he keeps his arm moving forward, owing to his gigantic limbs, and dunks the ball. And so begins the era of the SkyDunk.
Photos by Juan Ocampo / NBAE /Getty Images