Carter’s memorable moment was punctuated by an equally enthusiastic Kevin Garnett coming over to him, narrowly dodging VC’s swinging fist, and matching his energy with an emphatic chest bump. Who would’ve thought that Garnett’s response may have been partially due to his incorrect assumption that Vinsanity became $1 million richer with the dunk.
In an interview with Yahoo Sports, Garnett revealed that the U.S. Men’s Basketball Team put up a $1 million “bounty” on Yao Ming. The money was to be given to the first player who could dunk on Yao. “First of all, people didn’t know, we had a bounty out on Yao Ming,” KG said. “The whole USA team had a bet. We had a million dollar bet on who was going to be the first person to dunk on Yao Ming. None of us did. We all tried to dunk on Yao, but he would block it or we would miss.”
When Carter threw it down over Weis, Garnett initially assumed Vince won the money before coming to his senses. “So, the first thing I thought of when I saw Vince dunk over Frederic was oh shit, you won the million dollars,” he explains. “But then I realized it obviously wasn’t Yao. I pushed Vince, and if you look at the clip, he almost punches me in the face by accident. But my first thought was, oh shit, you won, you got the million.”