Magic wants LeBron in dunk contest

Updated: March 2, 2013, 2:15 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

LeBron James never has taken part in the NBA's dunk contest. Now he might have a million reasons to try it.

Magic Johnson on Friday said he wants to see James take part in the annual contest so badly that he offered to give $1 million to James -- or anyone who can beat him.

"Please, LeBron, get in the dunk contest. I'm going to put up a million dollars," Johnson said on ESPN's Kia NBA Countdown. "A million dollars from Magic to LeBron. Please get in the dunk contest. I go every year. I want to see you out there. A million to the winner."

The NBA currently pays $100,000 to the winner and $50,000 to the runner-up.

James always has declined to take part in the annual contest, but he has been throwing down trophy-worthy dunks lately in pregame warm-ups.

Jalen Rose called for more elite players to take part, as well.

"LeBron James, Blake Griffin both have to be in it," Rose said on the show, and Johnson agreed. "All-Star-caliber players helping build the league during All-Star weekend."

Griffin won the contest in 2011.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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