White demonstrating emergency step 6

To the surprise of few, well-traveled James William White III (a.k.a. James White, a.k.a. Flight) took the Italian Serie A slam dunk contest amidst the all-star festivities taking place there this weekend. White, now of Scavolini Pesaro, brought with him to the contest a résumé that goes back second-place finishes on two levels: the 2001 McDonald’s High School Slam Dunk contest and representing the University of Cincinnati Bearcats in the NCAA event in 2006.

All accolades and trophies aside, however, BallinEurope’s man in Italy, Enrico Cellini, notes that White has simply got this dunk contest-winning thing down to a science. Would you like to win your next dunk competition in Europe? Cellini, White and good ol’ YouTube show you how in six easy steps.

After dominating his fourth dunk contest within European all-star game weekends – previous wins include those in Turkey in 2008, Russia in 2010 and Italy last year) by displaying his trademark repertoire, James White should really work on a handy guide containing the must-do tricks for guaranteed success in any dunk contest on The Continent. It would go pretty much like this:

1. Start your dunking process from the opposite corner of the basket at which you will dunk.

2. Dramatically demand that everyone on the court – usually about 10 people, judges included – get outta your path to the rim.

3. Run all the way to the basket. Take advantage of having no European ref on your heels for once: Don’t bother committing repeated traveling and double-dribbling violations.

4. Take off from the free throw line (an imperative step).

5. Throw down a one-handed double-clutch dunk after soaring in the air. When competing against former NBA dunk contest champions, repeat steps from 1 to 4, then vary the grand finale with a two-handed double-clutch spike. (See also: Gerald Green, Russia, 2010.)

6. In dire situations, pass the ball between your legs before dunking. Especially recommended in Turkish all-star events.

Finally, the following are the Top Three WTF bits of trivia from the 2012 Italian dunk contest.

• Angelico Biella’s American guard Aubrey Coleman ranked second after White in the qualifying round by dunking first in a Batman costume and then in a Spiderman one. Probably not expecting to make it to the final himself, Coleman didn’t have a third dunk (and disguise) planned and awkwardly improvised a dunk over a scooter which had just been done by Italian young forward Achille Polonara.

• The jury of the contest featured an Utalian basketball legend (Carlton Myers), a random amateur dunker who won a post-your-own-dunk competition (?), a professional swimmer (??) and the marketing officer of the company sponsoring the contest (!!!).

• The hot girl handling the ball to White (at 0:27 in the video below) is Jeanene Fox, sister of former NBA champion Los Angeles Laker and Rick Fox. She was presented with a big-time music intro, gave the ball to James White and left the court.

Enrico Cellini is lifelong basketball fanatic and a long-time sportswriter with a focus on Italy and Spain. He was born among European hoops, was raised watching the NBA, and thinks choosing between American and European basketball is like choosing between one’s mother and father. You can follow him on Twitter or check out his Italian-language blog Hoop Addicted.

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