J. Cole to Perform at NBA All-Star Weekend 2012

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THIRD ANNUAL SPRITE® SLAM DUNK SHOWDOWN TO DETERMINE AMERICA’S BEST AMATEUR DUNKER AT NBA ALL-STAR 2012

-- Competition Will Be Streamed Live on NBA.com and Televised by NBA TV--

-- For Third Consecutive Year Two-Time NBA All-Star MVP LeBron James to Serve as Judge, While GRAMMY Nominee J. Cole will Perform --


NEW YORK, Feb. 13, 2012 – The double-clutch, tomahawk, windmill and 360 are some of the most memorable and backboard-shaking dunks of all time. Will we see a new twist on a dunk, or one never-before-seen, thrown down as the four finalists in the third annual Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown compete for the title of North America’s best amateur dunker?

We’ll find out when the Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown will take place at NBA All-Star Jam Session at the Orange County Convention Center on Friday, Feb. 24, at 4:25 ET. The event will be streamed live on NBA.com and a 30 minute recap program will air on NBA TV at 1:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, Feb.25. Additionally, Sprite is encouraging fans to tune in to Sprite.com immediately following the competition for a big announcement about a new Sprite program featuring several NBA players.

An All-Star panel of judges will help determine the winner, including NBA All-Star LeBron James of the Miami Heat, NBA Legend Darryl Dawkins, GRAMMY® nominee J. Cole, and Sprite All-Stars Carlos “Los” Smothers and Myree "Reemix" Bowden. The Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown will also feature a special performance from J. Cole at Center Court at NBA All-Star Jam Session.

Each participant will perform two dunks in the first round. The two contestants with the highest score from the judges will advance to the final round. The two finalists will complete two dunks and fans will determine the winner via SMS text message. The champion will receive a $10,000 grand prize and have the honor of presenting the trophy to the NBA player who wins the Sprite® Slam Dunk at the Amway Center the following night.

The four finalists who will compete at the Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown at NBA All-Star 2012 are:

 Zach Jones, 6’0” a.k.a. “Jonesy” – Emerging from Dayton, OH, Jones, 24, has been dunking for six years and won the semifinal competition in Washington D.C.

 Kenny Dobbs, 6’3” a.k.a. “K.Dobbs” – Dobbs, 26, hailing from Phoenix, Ariz. is an 11-year dunking veteran who won the semifinal competition in Los Angeles. He was also a finalist at last year’s Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown finals at NBA All-Star 2011 in Los Angeles.

 Michael Stewart, 6’1” a.k.a. “Airdogg” – Stewart, 28, comes out of the City of Angels and brings an impressive 15 years of dunking experience to the Showdown. He takes inspiration from NBA legends and dunkers Darryl Dawkins and Dominique Wilkins and solidified his spot in the Showdown through the online competition by uploading his dunk clip to NBA.com/dunk.

 Kendall Boyd-Hill, 6’1” a.k.a. “Kasper” – From St. Louis, MO, Boyd-Hill, 21, has been dunking since he was 14 years old. He takes inspiration from NBA aerial artists such as Vince Carter and is the winner from Denver.

Inspired by the NBA Sprite Slam Dunk contest that takes place annually on NBA All-Star Saturday Night presented by State Farm, Sprite and the NBA launched the national search for the best amateur dunkers with competitions in eight cities throughout the summer of 2011. James also led a panel of judges that picked two semifinalists from video entries. Through online votes, fans narrowed the top 10 down to the four finalists who will compete in Orlando.

Fans can visit the online home of the Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown at NBA.com/dunk, where they can access highlights from all the local competitions, including the finalists. Sprite is the world’s leading lemon-lime soft drink and has been the official soft drink of the NBA since 1994.

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