For the first time in Sprite Slam Dunk Contest history, fans have the power.
That's right. Spectators at home and in the arena will decide the winner -- all part of the most socially connected All-Star Weekend yet.
Here are the three ways to cast dunk contest votes:
1. Tweet the hashtag #SpriteSlam along with a letter corresponding to a specific dunker
2. Through SMS text message
3. At the NBA.com website
Meanwhile, Pacers guard Paul George invited fans to submit dunk ideas to him via Twitter (@King24George). Along with Timberwolves rookie Derrick Williams (@RealDWill7), Rockets forward Chase Budinger (@CBudinger) and Jazz forward Jeremy Evans (@JeremyEvans40), George will be tweeting throughout the contest similar to how NHL and NFL players tweeted during the All-Star skills competition and Pro Bowl, respectively.
But that's not the only way fans can connect. Here are some other possibilities:
• The NBA is partnering with the Facebook app Shaker to create an online hangout for fans.
• The NBA's GameTime mobile app will allow users to watch 90-plus hours of on- and off-court videos.
• The All-Star Pulse feature is back for this year's festivities. It allows you to easily follow trending topics on Facebook and Twitter before, during and after the events.
• The new "Social Spotlight" app is worth a try. It will showcase top tweets, photos and videos from fans directly on NBA.com.
• For behind-the-scenes NBA Twitter coverage this weekend, these accounts will keep you informed and entertained.
• The whole weekend will have hashtags galore. On Friday, the Rising Stars game is #BBVARisingStars, with individual squads offering #TeamShaq and #TeamChuck. For the Celebrity All-Star Game, it's #SprintCeleb.