- The Washington Times - Monday, February 16, 2009


Nate Robinson wins slam dunk contest - All-Star Saturday Night has become a better show than the game itself, and this year was no exception. Robinson, all 5-foot-9 of him, leaped over last year’s winner, Dwight Howard, to win his second slam dunk contest. Howard was no slouch himself, attempting to recreate his Superman gimmick of 2008 by stepping into a phone booth and emerging with a cape. The NBA likely would prefer a legitimate superstar like Howard to win the weekend’s signature event, but anything is better than the 1990s winners of Brent Barry, Harold Miner and Isaiah Rider.

Maryland surging, Georgetown fading - Putting two weeks of controversy behind them, the Terps topped Virginia Tech on Saturday to climb back to .500 in the ACC and keep their slim NCAA tournament hopes alive. Georgetown, meanwhile, staged a valiant comeback at Syracuse but lost again, falling to 13-10 overall and 4-8 in the Big East. Neither team has an easy road ahead, with Maryland scheduled to face four ranked teams and Georgetown set to face three before the regular season ends.


1. Suns falling apart - Two years ago, Phoenix was an NBA Finals contender - now it’s ninth in the West, fired coach Terry Porter and may trade Amare Stoudemire.

2. The MVP debate - LeBron James and Kobe Bryant went back and forth during the first half, but Kobe has the edge with a 2-0 head-to-head record.

3. Watch out for the Spurs - It’s an odd-numbered year, which means it’s Tim Duncan’s turn for another title.

4. Durant flies under radar - No one notices because he’s playing in Oklahoma City, but Kevin Durant’s numbers for January - 30.8 points a game on 51.5 percent field goal shooting and 52.6 percent from 3-point range - were extraordinary.

5. The race for No. 1 - Winning the draft lottery is the only thing for Wizards fans to look forward to in the second half, other than the possible return of Gilbert Arenas.


“I asked him yesterday in the elevator. He was like, ‘Hey, I’ll do it.’ I thought he was joking.” - Nate Robinson on asking Dwight Howard about dunking over him

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