By LARRY VAUGHT
Most University of Kentucky basketball fans know that Kenny “Sky” Walker on the 1989 NBA Slam Dunk Championship. Some might even know he finished third in the 1990 contest.
Not many, though, probably know he also won two other slam dunk competitions during his professional career. He won a slam dunk championship when he played professionally in Spain and then won his final slam dunk title in 1998 when he played professionally for one year in Japan.
“That’s something I am very proud of. To win slam dunk championships in three countries is maybe something nobody else has done,” Walker, a former UK All-American, said. “Everybody seems familiar with the NBA Slam Dunk title back in 1989 — and even I can’t believe it has been that long ago. Doesn’t seem like it.
“I give my mother a lot of credit for convincing me to stay in the contest because my father had just dies. I was going to pull out. Mom said, ‘If your dad had been here today he would have been watching you.’ So give her all the credit for having confidence in me.”
Walker made the all-star team in Spain to get a spot in the dunk championship he won. Same scenario during his final pro season in Japan.
“A lot of great dunkers won the NBA contest, but they did not win contests in other countries,” Walker laughed and said. “I am very proud to have say I won all three that I did.”
Could he still dunk today?
Since COVID-19 shut down almost everything, Walker says he’s been walking, running and working out a lot more the last few months.
“My legs feel pretty good. I have not tried to dunk yet but my hops might be coming back,” Walker said. “Maybe we could have a dunk contest on an 8-foot goal.”