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The Indiana Pacers rookie guard joined the Posted Up with Chris Haynes podcast to discuss his recent performance in the Slam Dunk contest. Hear the full conversation on the Posted Up with Chris Haynes podcast. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you listen.
CHRIS HAYNES: I don't know if you talked about this since the dunk contest. But that dunk you did, your first dunk you put out there, I don't know if people really appreciate it. Obviously, the judges didn't really appreciate it. But that was arguably the best dunk in the contest. And you thought that was a great dunk as well because you believed, and everybody else believed, that had to be a 50.
So we saw your expression after that first one. What was going through your mind, I guess, when you saw the score?
CASSIUS STANLEY: It was like I had a game plan. And my game plan, there was no way in the world-- there was nothing in the game plan written down that I was like, what if I get 8 to 9's on this? So [INAUDIBLE].
CHRIS HAYNES: Yeah.
CASSIUS STANLEY: But then after that, when everyone got high scores, I was like, OK, I got to switch up my game plan. Because I expected to get a high score, then play it by ear. But then after that, it was like, all right, well, I'm at the bottom now.
So if that was one of my best dunks, I got to go for the home run because I don't know-- what's going to get me a 50? What's going to get me a 47, a 48. Because I was trying to-- and then I'm like studying their dunks.
I'm like, OK, so what did they do that got them a high score? And what did I not do? And so then that's when I was just so lost because I'm like, OK, maybe if I go for power, maybe they'll like the power. Maybe if I just try something crazy, they might like that.
I was trying to figure out which lane to go through. And it was really interesting because I don't think they understood what I did on the first dunk. That's why.
CHRIS HAYNES: The judges this year, due to the COVID protocol, they were not on the court like they would be in other dunk contest. They saw the replay, but they were high up. I don't think they really got to capture what it is that you truly did. Do you think that played a factor?
CASSIUS STANLEY: So that's what I thought at first. I was like--
CHRIS HAYNES: At first, OK.
CASSIUS STANLEY: In the midst of it, I was like, all right, they're up there, so OK, maybe that. And then after the contest, because I didn't really look at the scoreboard because I knew what I did. I didn't need to see a replay.
So after, when I saw the replay and found out that they saw the replay and saw the same replay that everyone saw, that's when I was like, OK, and you saw the replay. It's even crazier.
I had a second dunk. I had a second dunk based on 47, 48, 49, 50. I didn't have a second dunk based on 44. So the 48-- I thought, OK, lowest, because then I was going to use Sabonis for it. And it was going to be a good dunk. It was going to be a good dunk.
But it was going to be-- I knew I had a 50, and I didn't want to break out anything too crazy for the judges to say, all right, you used your two craziest dunk on your first two. And then my third dunk they might have thought wasn't as good as those. So I was going to play it by score.
CHRIS HAYNES: Wow.
CASSIUS STANLEY: It was a good dunk, but if I used it base on them--
CHRIS HAYNES: No, for sure.
CASSIUS STANLEY: --it might have been a 39 based on their scoring.