LeBron A Slam Dunk For NBA, Sprite All-Star Marketing

May 4, 2009: The 2009 NBA playoffs are still in progress, but the league already is planning marketing for its February 2010 All-Star Game in Dallas. The NBA and partner Sprite are inviting amateur players to display their best dunking skills to claim the first Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown title. Newly crowned NBA MVP LeBron James will help to choose the finalists and appear in marketing support with the tag: "We've seen LeBron dunk. Now let's see you." An eight-city tour in May, June and July will invite fans to participate in slam dunk competitions as part of the NBA Nation Tour presented by T-Mobile and Kia Motors. Darryl Dawkins has been designated as the first ambassador for the NBA Nation tour. and will be an on-site judge for the dunk event. In addition, an online component at will enable fans to upload videos of their own dunks. James, who said he wants to participate in the real Sprite Slam Dunk event at next year's All-Star Game, will join fans in selecting two winning dunks from among the online video submissions. Videos of the top two online qualifiers, along with dunk videos of the eight qualifiers from the Sprite Slam Dunk tour will then be posted, and fans will vote to determine the four finalists, to be named next March. The final four will participate in a dunk contest during All-Star Weekend in Dallas, seeking a grand prize of $10,000; the winner also will be honored at the Sprite Slam Dunk contest during NBA All-Star Saturday Night on Feb. 13, 2010. “The Sprite Slam Dunk contest is one of the most exciting and captivating events for our fans during the week of NBA All-Star,” Mark Tatum, the NBA's evp-marketing partnerships, said in a statement. “By inviting fans to participate as dunkers, spectators, and ultimately, as the judges who will crown the champion of the Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown, we are able to bring the excitement of the Sprite Slam Dunk to fans on a local and very personal level.” Go to for rules and regulations.

May 8-10: Atlanta, Sweet Auburn Springfest Dobbs Plaza
May 16-17: Los Angeles, Universal Citywalk (100 Universal City Plaza)
May 23-24: San Francisco, Carnaval (Harrison Street b/w 16th & 22nd)
May 30-31: Portland, OR, Rose Festival (1020 SW Naito Parkway)
June 20-21: New York, South Street Seaport (Fulton & South Street)
June 27-28: Washington, DC, Capitol BBQ Battle (Penn. Ave. NW b/w 9th & 10th)
July 1-5: Chicago, Taste of Chicago
July 10-12: Dallas, Taste of Dallas (Record & Corbin Street)

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