Lakers News: Larry Nance Jr. Named 2018 Slam Dunk Contest Participant

Lakers News: Larry Nance Jr. Named 2018 Slam Dunk Contest Participant

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Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

After months of speculation, Los Angeles Lakers forward Larry Nance Jr. was named among the four participants for the 2018 Slam Dunk Contest. The competition will take place on Feb. 17 at Staples Center during NBA All-Star Weekend.

With Nance officially in the fold, he receives a unique advantage in that he’ll be able to showcase his talents in front of the home crowd Lakers fans. Joining Nance in the contest are the Dallas Mavericks’ Dennis Smith Jr., Aaron Gordon of the Orlando Magic, and Indiana’s Victor Oladipo.

Defending Slam Dunk Contest champion Glenn Robinson III suffered an ankle injury during training camp and just returned to the court on Thursday, playing for the Pacers’ G League affiliate.

Nance intended on participating in last year’s Slam Dunk Contest, but an injury derailed any possibility of doing so. Healthy again, the opportunity this time around — especially considering that the event will be held in Los Angeles — was too great to pass up.

Nance reaffirmed his interest in finally taking part in the event during a recent appearance on the Lakers Nation podcast. Known as one of the league’s most prolific dunkers, he’ll finally get a chance to further prove that notion in front of a national audience.

Prior to Nance, the Lakers were represented just four times in the Slam Dunk Contest. The group consisted of Michael Cooper, Antonio Harvey, Kobe Bryant and Shannon Brown. Of the quartet, only Bryant won the contest — Most notably doing so as a rookie during the 1996-97 season.

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