The Knicks’ James “Flight’’ White will soar through the Houston air during All-Star Weekend and try to avoid Steve Novak’s 3-point missiles.
As first reported by The Post, White was officially named to the Feb. 16 Slam Dunk contest. In a new format, White will be part of an Eastern dunking contingent of Pacers guard and 2007 champion Gerald Green and the Raptors’ Terrence Ross. The dunkers for the West are Utah’s Jeremy Evans, the Clippers’ Eric Bledsoe and Denver’s Kenneth Faried. Novak, as expected, was named to the 3-point shooting contest.
White told The Post he thinks the dunk contest is fine the way it is, without the superstars.
“It’s best for the people who want to do it,’’ White said Wednesday night before it became official. “Put the people who actually want to do it and want to win and think it’s fun, than picking the people who are forced to do it. Some people maybe are protecting their reputation. They don’t want to lose.’’
White, who played the last two seasons in the Italian League, has big shoes to fill. Former Knicks guard Nate Robinson, who is 5-foot-7, won the slam-dunk event three times — an NBA record.
“It’s fun for the fans — an opportunity to show your talents,’’ White said.
White gave his teammates a preview last week at Temple University after practice, taking off from the free-throw line and leaped all the way to the rim.
White became a dunking sensation when he battled David Lee in a memorable McDonald’s High School All-American Slam-Dunk competition in 2001 in high school. White won dunk contests in Italy and Turkey and the internet is filled with White’s dunking highlights, including his signature-between-the-legs, free-throw-line slam.
Ironically, White’s role is as a defensive swingman and rarely has dunked in games.
“I want the two points,’’ White said. “If I have an opportunity to dunk, I’ll do it.”
The Post first reported on Christmas White was approached by the league for the dunk contest.
White set to take ‘Flight’ in Houston
New York Post | Feb 8