PHOENIX — Denver Nuggets swingman J.R. Smith will replace Memphis forward Rudy Gay in the slam dunk contest.
Gay was forced to pull out Tuesday because of a strained left hip. Smith also competed in the 2005 event.
“I have a few things under my sleeve,” Smith said Tuesday after the Nuggets won in Miami. “I can’t really talk about it. It’s top secret, man.”
Defending champion Dwight Howard of Orlando, 2006 winner Nate Robinson of New York, and Portland rookie Rudy Fernandez round out the field.
The dunk contest is the final event of All-Star Saturday night.