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Getting Dunked On

It's no fun being a defender when an NBA stud decides to pin the tale on the dunkee
Author:

DWIGHT HOWARD,Magic Forward

"I was in themall, and this dude asks if I'll sign something for him," Howard (number12, above) recalls. "I said, 'Cool, what?' He opens up his jacket, and onhis T-shirt he has the picture of me getting dunked on by Kobe [Bryant]. I hadto sign it. I had to laugh at that one." Adds Howard, who this seasonposterized the Knicks' Eddy Curry, "When you get dunked on, there's nothingyou can do about it. You just want to go do it to somebody else on the otherend."

ELTON BRAND,Clippers Forward

"As a shotblocker you always think you can get some of the ball," says Brand (in red,defending Gilbert Arenas). He ranked fifth in the NBA with 2.54 blocks."Sometimes that means you take it on the chest. Getting dunked on used tobe a really big deal when I was younger, but now I know it's just two points.The worst anyone got me was Jamaal Magloire of the Hornets [in 2001]. I waskilling them--I had 30 points early in the fourth--but after that dunk I wasembarrassed and my mind wasn't in the game."

ADONAL FOYLE,Warriors Center

Foyle (number 31,against Amaré Stoudemire) recalls dunks on him by Bryant and Derek Anderson as"special to me." Says Foyle, "When I started, it was the mostannoying thing. It changes the game. The worst is when you underestimate a guy.You're like, 'Oh, I got this.' Then he cocks it back and [dunks]. That's notfun."

THEO RATLIFF,Blazers Center

Ratliff (right,with Lamar Odom) is guilt-free about allowing slams. "Ninety-nine percentof the time I get dunked on, it's because my teammates made a [defensive]mistake," he says. "It's not a big deal. I'm going to go after everyshot trying to block. If they get the dunk in, it's just another play."

BRAD MILLER,Kings Center

"A guy likeShaq [right, dunking on Ben Wallace], he's dunked on everybody," saysMiller, explaining why he's not embarrassed to get beaten by the big man. AsJazz center Jarron Collins says, "Shaq doesn't count. He gets me everyyear. He never says much. He does it for the crowd, and he does the walk downthe floor afterward. You don't take it personally."

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FERNANDO MEDINA/NBAE/GETTY IMAGES (BRYANT DUNK)

TWO PHOTOS

ROBERT BECK (2, HOWARD & MILLER HEADSHOTS)

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BILL FRAKES (BRAND HEADSHOT)

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GREG NELSON (FOYLE HEADSHOT)

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JOHN W. MCDONOUGH (RATLIFF HEADSHOT)

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MARK GOLDMAN/ICON SMI (ARENAS)

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JEFF CHIU/AP (STOUDEMIRE)

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JEFF LEWIS/AP (ODOM)

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CARLOS OSORIO/AP (O'NEAL)