Stephen A. Smith went off on the 2022 NBA Slam Dunk Contest, calling it a ‘nationwide atrocity’ – and DJ Jazzy Jeff tells HollywoodLife why he agrees with Smith’s meltdown.
It’s commonplace for a Stephen A. Smith freakout to go viral, however what the First Take commenter mentioned following the 2022 NBA Slam Dunk Contest was distinctive, even for him. “That was the worst Slam Dunk Contest within the historical past of basketball,” mentioned Stephen, within the now-infamous clip that made the rounds and was shared all through the Twitterverse. “It was a nationwide atrocity. It was terrible,” he mentioned with vitriol and disgust. “Any person must say it, so I’m going to say it.” Whereas Stephen had a number of detractors, many agreed with Stephen’s take – together with DJ Jazzy Jeff. “He was completely on level,” the hip-hop icon tells HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY.
Stephen A’s entire slam dunk contest rant had Kendrick Perkins in tears “It was a nationwide atrocity” pic.twitter.com/x7BCHo07MC
— CJ Fogler AKA Perc70 #BlackLivesMatter (@cjzero) February 21, 2022
Jazzy Jeff, who partnered with Michelob ULTRA and NBA Jam for the “Enjoy IT Like It’s 1993” marketing campaign forward of the 2022 weekend, informed HollywoodLife that the exhibition, with its missed dunks and underwhelming slams, didn’t dwell as much as the competition’s historical past. “This was not [Michael] Jordan, Dominique [Wilkins] or Vince Carter,” says Jazzy Jeff. “However, on the finish of the day, it’s concerning the followers. So if the followers in Cleveland and the fellows within the contest loved it, I assume that’s all that issues.”
Dominque, oddly sufficient, was one of many NBA Jam legends who have been available at Cleveland’s Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in the course of the 2022 All-Star Weekend. Michelob ULTRA inspired followers to “Take pleasure in It Like It’s 1993” – the identical 12 months that NBA Jam grew to become a worldwide phenomenon – in the course of the weekend with particular occasions, together with a Meet & Greet with Clyde Drexler, Dikembe Mutombo, Dominique Wilkins, and James Worthy. There was additionally a musical efficiency by Fats Joe and a spin set by DJ Jazzy Jeff himself.
“What a weekend,” Jeff tells HollywoodLife, “To be a part of celebrating the seventy fifth anniversary of the NBA and bringing all of the nostalgia and pleasure of NBA Jam to Cleveland. Michelob ULTRA is thought for creating superb fan experiences for a motive, and attending to play a job of their program with NBA JAM was surreal. We had an unbelievable time – I carried out a set at Growth Shaka Lakas as a part of an superior lineup that includes my son Cory Townes and an absolute legend, Fats Joe.”
Fats Joe and DJ Jazzy Jeff share one thing in widespread – they’re each characters in video video games. Fats Joe is a legendary tough boss in Def Jam: Battle For New York, and Jazzy Jeff is among the many, many secret characters in NBA Jam. “[NBA Jam was certainly one of my favourite video video games of all time…particularly as a result of I’m an enormous basketball fan,” he says. “I forgot easy methods to get to myself. However I bear in mind exhibiting off on dates. I might casually counsel we play NBA Jam after which choose myself.”
[To get Jazzy Jeff, one should first go to the NBA Jam display screen to enter their initials. Relying on which system a participant was utilizing, they’d do a fancy button sequence involving the initials “J,” “A,” and “Z.” The proper sequence would unlock Jazz. Different secret characters embrace MCA and Advert-Rock of the Beastie Boys, Parliament’s George Clinton, and Jazz’s hip-hop companion, Will Smith.
Talking of, a brand new era is being launched to Will Smith – at the very least, the character that Will portrayed on The Contemporary Prince of Bel-Air. With the brand new Bel-Air collection on Peacock, youthful viewers see a dramatic retelling of Will (Jabari Banks) coping with being a fish out of water in upscale Beverly Hills. The brand new collection has a cousin Carlton Banks (Olly Sholotan), an Uncle Phil (Adrian Holmes), and even a Jazz. Jordan L. Jones performs Bel-Air’s model of Jazz, who famously would get thrown out of the Banks family after irritating folks. Sadly, the dramatic tone of Bel-Air will rob this new era of the “Jazz getting thrown out” meme, however the precise DJ Jazzy Jeff isn’t mad. “I wouldn’t want that again ache on anybody,” he mentioned with fun.
There’s something that Jazz needs he could possibly be – and that’s a secret character in one other online game. The final NBA Jam installment got here in 2011. There hasn’t been speak of reviving the franchise, however Jazz hints that he wouldn’t thoughts switching genres. Although he wasn’t a featured character in any of the Def Jam preventing video games, Jazz tells HollywoodLife he wouldn’t thoughts throwing down – at the very least, within the online game world.
“I might like to be a secret participant in Mortal Kombat,” says Jazzy Jeff, referring to the opposite main online game sensation that Halfway, producers of NBA Jam, launched within the early Nineteen Nineties. “I feel all people needs they may battle like them,” provides Jazz. “My pals and I might act out scenes and do the sound results. That was the most effective.”
Followers can load up Mortal Kombat and NBA Jam on their SNES or Genesis consoles whereas they “Take pleasure in It Like It’s 1993.” To assist followers get within the spirit, followers can go to EnjoyItLikeIts1993.com to get some restricted version Michelob ULTRA x NBA merch, be taught concerning the particular version NBA Jam can, and extra information.