Chicago is getting its very own slam dunk contest this weekend. Four contestants from across the globe will compete for $10,000 and the City Slam title of Chicago. 2014 College Slam Dunk champion Marcus Lewis of Streamwood, Ill., will represent the Chicago area. The contest begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday in Seward Park, and Bulls broadcaster Stacey King and forward Jimmy Butler will judge.
"I'm going to use a mix of both [old and new dunks]," Lewis said . "I have one to two new ones and I'll reuse one or two. It makes the competition more fun to use your imagination."
The contest will feature four segments: freestyle, tandem, vertical bar and signature. In the freestyle portion, each contestant will have one minute to make as many dunks as possible. Same goal goes for the tandem segment , but they must include a teammate. The third portion is the vertical bar, where the contestant has to jump over the bar and make a dunk. The bar will begin at 40 inches above the ground and be raised each round until one dunker is left. The final segment of the contest is the signature dunk, where each contestant has 60 seconds to make a single dunk.
The contestants will be ranked 1 to 4 in each segment and will be awarded points based on that ranking. Whichever dunker has the highest score at the end of the day is the winner.
Lewis, an Eastern Kentucky alum, doesn't have a plan going into the competition. He's more interested in analyzing the situation and other contestants.
"My experience in the dunk contest in college will help," Lewis said. "If you overthink it, that's how you make mistakes. I'm going to be sure my legs are OK. ... You have to analyze the situation."
One of the dunks Lewis might perform?
"My favorite dunk is the alley-oop between the legs because it took me two years to be able to do," he said.
The Chicago event kicks off a three-city tour that will make stops in Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles, with different contestants in each city.
"It's a good feeling to stay at home [in Chicago]," Lewis said.