By JAN CARLO ANOLIN
Former La Salle forward Jamie Malonzo ruled the first stay-at-home dunk contest on Saturday, besting former Ateneo star Thirdy Ravena and Juan Gomez de Liano of University of the Philippines.
Malonzo bagged the “Home Jam: Dunkers Only” title by garnering a total of 59 points, a digit away from a perfect score judged by two-time FIBA 3×3 Under-18 dunk champion Kobe Paras and Robert Bolick of PBA’s NorthPort.
Malonzo, who also copped the Most Heated Award for sporting a black Kobe 7 shoes, got perfect scores in both second and third rounds – a two-handed slam lobbed from the second floor of their residence hallway and a powerful one-handed windmill dunk.
In the first round, the 6-foot-6 Malonzo played safe with a one-handed slam while wearing a cap.
“I think I did okay, not too bad,” said Malonzo after the game in the program hosted by National University’s Shaun Ildefonso.
De Liano had the most attempts made but nonetheless impressed the judges with left-handed alley-oop, one-handed 360 and left-handed dunks over dad Bert for a total of 48 points (18-20-20).
Ravena showed his high-flying prowess with two-handed reverse, one-handed windmill alley-oop and the comical Manu Ginobili-esque side step slams, tallying 19, 20 and 18 points respectively for a total of 47.
The 6-foot-2 UP guard won the Showmanship Award while the “Perfect 50 Best Dunk” special award went to Ravena, courtesy of his side step dunk in the third round.
“Sarap ng feeling naka-dunk ulit ako after ilang days,” said the 6-foot-3 Ravena, who will take his act abroad after signing with the San-En NeoPhoenix in the Japan B.League.
“It’s also great na nagkakatuwaan lang tayo ngayong time, trying to do what we can to make other people happy. ‘Yun ‘yung importante.”
The contest, a COVID-19 fundraiser initiated by ABS-CBN, consists of three rounds with the highest tallied scorer declared as the winner.
Paras and Bolick, meantime, thanked the organization for the opportunity to participate in the fundraiser contest streamed live on ABS-CBN’s Facebook and Instagram page.
“Lahat kasi [sila] not in basketball shapes. Hindi sila ganun katatangkad pero grabe sila dumakdak,” Bolick said. “In general, napakasaya. Hopefully, sa mga kabataan diyan, pakita nila ‘yung mga ganitong klaseng talent. Sana gayahin din nila.”
“I’m just grateful I have the chance to be one of the judges this time just because in every dunk contest I have, I’m the one being judge, Paras said. “It’s fun to see being together just showing people that basketball is something that can really unite people.”