Fans will decide 2012 Slam Dunk Contest winner

Fri, Feb 24
2:12
PM ET

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

Paul George
David Sherman/NBAE/Getty ImagesWhat dunks do you want Paul George to do? Tweet him!

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.

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