The News-Sentinel caught up with Smith, a 6-foot-6 player known for his phenomenal leaping ability, and asked him a few questions as he prepared for tonight's dunk competition.
How old were you when you first dunked the basketball?
“I was in the eighth grade, going to the ninth grade. We were playing open gym. That's the time you always cherry- pick, stand at half-court and never run back on defense. I was standing at half court, one of my friends gets the rebound, throws it to me and I went up just for a regular one-hand dunk. I went crazy, and ran all around the gym jumping up and down.”“I'd say 6 foot.”
Who's your favorite dunker ever?
“Vince Carter, no question. … In the past you've got your (Michael) Jordan, your Dominique (Wilkins), but of my era I've got to say Vince Carter. He might be the greatest dunker ever.”“Honestly, it had to come in college, at Marshall University. … We were in a game and it was a three-on-one break and I had it on the wing. I kind of faked the ball like I was throwing a pass and the defender bit, and I just rose up and dunked it. It was a pretty exciting play. It was against Eastern Kentucky, I believe.”“I've missed a lot of dunks. … Dunks are kind of like a shot, sometimes you're going to miss them. I've missed dunks and got hung and all kind of things. ”
Who's the best player you've dunked on?
“I don't really have any names.”“Oh, I've got me a 7-footer before. … They're tough to get.”
What is the best dunk in your repertoire?
“I can't tell you. That's a secret. I'm hoping if I get to the finals, I'll bring it out and everybody will be pretty excited to see that one.”