Heng Yifeng of Team China wowed a famous jury to take the Turkish Airlines Slam Dunk Contest while fellow NIJT participant Ludde Hakanson from FC Barcelona Regal was on fire in taking the VTB Arena Three-Point Contest at the Euroleague Fan Zone at Trafalgar Square.
With a jury made up of former Euroleague greats Aryvdas Sabonis, Trajan Langdon and Joe Arlauckas, Heng drove down the right side, did a mini-windmill two-handed dunk. Arlauckas awarded 8.5 points, Langdon and Sabonis both scores of 9 to give the Chinese forward the crown in front of hundreds of fans in downtown London.
Most of the NIJT teams entered one player for each of the contests while Club Joventut Badalona did not take part in the event, with local London players filling in. The dunkers had only one dunk to show off their skills while the long distance marksmen had one minute to make as many three-pointers as possible.
The slam dunk contest did have some fine and light-hearted moments. Barcelona’s Adnan Omeragic had Hakanson sit on the court almost under the basket before point guard teammate Pau Gami assisted on a fine dunk, which grew loads of praise from the Trafalgar Square on-lookers.
Sabonis also was humorously harsh on young Lithuanian Nobertas Giga, giving the Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius big man just 2 points after he missed his dunk attempt three times.
In the three-point shootout, Vuk Jovanovic of Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade and INSEP Paris’ Charley Potents both made 14 triples in a minute before Hakanson got hot and drained 17 long balls in 60 seconds to take the crown.