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February 12, 2016

Aaron Gordon

Toronto, Ontario

Q. Kobe Bryant is playing his last All-Star Game. Can you talk about his influence on you?
AARON GORDON: He's got a couple more cameras than me. I watched Kobe growing up and watched him in the All-Star Game. The impact he's had on my basketball game and in my life and so many other people, it's really big. It's astronomical. That's Kobe. That's the man.

Q. A lot of people are paying attention to the Three-Point Contest because of the Splash Brothers.
AARON GORDON: Yeah, it's the evolution of shooting. People are just such good shooters now. It's almost comparable, the Three-Point and the Dunk Contest.

Q. This isn't your first Dunk Contest?
AARON GORDON: No, it's not my first Dunk Contest. I've been to a couple before. I'm super excited. Obviously there's going to be nerves and anxiety. But that's fun. When you have thousands of people watching you, that's fun to me.

Q. You talked about the evolution. How difficult is it to come up with something new in the Dunk Contest? Because we've seen so much.
AARON GORDON: Right, I was watching a lot of the old Dunk Contests, and it's pretty basic dunks because nobody has seen them. Now if you do something like that, people are going to look at you like, Get this guy out of here. You've got to definitely be creative. But, you know, the longer the game is going to be around, the more people can be creative and the more people can do.

Q. What's it like going up against a guy like Zach LaVine?
AARON GORDON: He makes it look effortless, gliding through the air. Almost like a long-jumping kind of guy.

Q. Does that create more pressure when you know you have Zach?
AARON GORDON: I know what I can do. I'm going to do some crazy stuff regardless of who else is there.

Q. One of your old teammates Stanley [Johnson] said you can beat Zach. You can win this thing. How do you decide what you do? Do you cut it down to five or ten things or try to figure out the best ones or is it a timing thing based off what other people have done?
AARON GORDON: It's a little bit of both. I think my first practice you just start just brainstorming what you can do. Then you go kind of around the internet and see what like -- no, I'm serious. Like the Flight Brothers or Dunkademics, you kind of see what they're doing and tweak accordingly so you're not just taking and copying. Then you kind of go through a slow process of a lot of jumping.

Q. What's the challenge for a big guy like [Andre] Drummond? A 6'10", 6'11" guy?
AARON GORDON: It's really close to the rim already. He can hang on the rim and be that high off the ground. But I think people kind of like guards dunking, but I'm mobile like a guard, so I'm going to give a good show.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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