Jamario Moon, the Toronto Raptors' 27-year-old rookie, got word Friday that he will be among the participants in the slam-dunk contest at the NBA All-Star Weekend in New Orleans on February 16th.
"I feel great, I'm excited," said Moon, a 6-foot-8 forward who has drawn comparisons to former NBA legend Julius Erving — Dr. J — for his swooping drives to the basket and his ability to palm the basketball with ease.
Moon's teammates are excited as well.
"He told me he's got some dunks," said Raptors
guard Juan Dixon.
What moves Moon will breaking out for one of the most-watched basketball events of the season are a closely-guarded secret, as Moon doesn't want to tip his hand.
"I got to keep it low for now," he said Friday night after wowing the Madison Square Garden crowd with a spectacular double-clutching fadeaway lay-up.
Moon has been one of the NBA's most exciting rookies after making the Raptors
roster as a free agent following a six-year tour of basketball's low-minor leagues.
He ranks among rookie leaders in points (8.2), rebounds (6.4); and blocked shots (1.66).
The last Raptor to participate in the dunk contest was Vince Carter, who won the event in 2000.