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HomeBasketball TodayHeat's Jaime Jaquez Spills All in Epic Dunk Contest Confession!

Heat’s Jaime Jaquez Spills All in Epic Dunk Contest Confession!

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Jaquez has been instrumental to Miami’s success this season and will represent the team during All-Star weekend.

It was officially announced Thursday that Miami Heat rookie sensation Jaime Jaquez Jr. will participate in the NBA’s Slam Dunk Contest during All-Star weekend. This was heavily rumored back in early January, but has been made official as he will be the fourth player from the Heat to participate in the contest with the last being Derrick Jones Jr. back in 2020 where he won.

After practice Friday as Miami is in the midst of winning four of their last five games, Jaquez talks about the opportunity being an excited one for him. He would say to the media that it is “really special” to be able to be in the Slam Dunk contest according to Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel.

“I was very excited when I got that call, when they offered me a spot to participate, something that I’ve always been a fan of my entire life, watching the All-Star Weekend,” Jaquez said. “The dunk contest is something that you always look forward to. So for them to be able to hand out an invitation to me is really special.”

Joining Jaquez will be the winner from last year’s contest in G League player Matt McClung who is a part of the Orlando Magic, Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown, and New York Knicks star Jacob Toppin. Jaquez has been known for his dunking ability as he even won a contest of the same style back in high school, but can’t say if his “hops” are better now.

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“I heard the adrenaline for the dunk contest is unlike anything people have ever felt, at least that’s what they’re telling me,” Jaquez said. “So we’ll see, we’ll see.”

Jaquez involved in All-Star weekend besides the dunk contest

Miami Heat star Jaime Jaquez Jr. holding a ball on fire.

It will be a busy weekend for Jaquez as the dunk contest will not be the only opportunity he will get as the rookie is also set to take place in the Rising Stars Challenge. He said earlier to the media that being a part of that is “an honor” as he knows a ton of great players that have been in the game showing off the young talent of the NBA.

“I know a lot of great players have been through that game,” Jaquez said. “So just to be a part of that and be able to participate is an honor.”

With Jaquez being of Mexican descent, his upward trend in attention is hyping up that community and he has acknowledged the fact his play is causing that. He called it “really special” to see the impact he has had on Latin people not just in this country, but the rest of the world.

“Just as far as fandom and people coming up to me and just saying how much they appreciate what I’ve been doing for Latin people all over the country and all over the world,” Jaquez said. “So to be able to have that impact and see it live on people coming to talk to me and at games, it’s really special.”

“Being here in a very Latin community, the impact is even greater,” Jaquez continued. “Just because I’m here and there’s obviously a very high Latin population. And to be able to see that physically I think is really important.”

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More Heat representation besides Jaquez

The two-time Eastern Conference rookie of the month won’t be the only Miami Heat representation of All-Star weekend as his teammate in Bam Adebayo was selected as a reserve for the conference’s All-Star team, which he sees as a sign of a “high level of respect” since the coaches of the association pick the players.

“High level of respect, obviously, just because the coaches pick you,” Adebayo said. “It’s not the usual, you let the fans pick most of them. But the coaches pick you. Having coaches who scheme against you, obviously, and have to coach against you, there’s just a respect value there and I really appreciate that.”

However, Adebayo has and always will be a team-first player as he credits his teammates for bringing him to the level he is at currently. On the season so far, Adebayo is averaging 20.2 points, 10.5 rebounds, and four assists per game while shooting 50.9 percent from the field with Miami.


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