NEW YORK — Syracuse guard Dion Waiters competed with fellow guard Michael Carter-Williams for dunk of the game during the second half of Syracuse’s 95-70 win over St. John’s on Saturday.
One play after Carter-Williams’ crowd-pleasing tomahawk jam over St. John’s forward God’sgift Achiuwa, Waiters had a highlight dunk of his own. James Southerland had just stolen the ball and fed it to Waiters, who had an unimpeded path to the basket.
Waiters threw down his patented dunk, bringing the ball wide to his right before slamming the ball violently through the rim. Waiters’ basket gave SU a 70-46 lead with 9:16 left as the rout was on.
“Both are great dunks,” Carter-Williams said. “Dion gets one of those a game. He’s a great dunker.”
The impact had the same effect as Carter-Williams’ shot, bringing the pro-Syracuse crowd to its feet for the second time in less than a minute. The Garden hummed for several minutes afterward.
“It got me hyped,” Waiters said. “I tried to come down and duplicate what he did.”
It was a welcome sign for Waiters, who had struggled in his previous three games. Against West Virginia, Cincinnati and Notre Dame, Waiters had averaged 7.0 points on 7-for-28 shooting.
Against the Red Storm, Waiters busted out of his slump with 14 points, going 5-for-9 from the field and 2-for-5 from downtown. He also contributed four assists and four rebounds.
“The shots that I was making, I was missing,” Waiters said. “I just got in the gym extra. I went overtime, and it pays at the end of the day.”Wesley Cheng