« Chalmers. Cole. JAAAAAAAAAAMES !!!! And the rest is an incredible crash testifying to the power of the gesture, plunging the TD Garden into embarrassment mixed with wonder. On March 18, 2013, when the Heat moved to Boston, LeBron James just posterized, for eternity, Jason Terry. Chris Elise, photographer for BasketUSA, is at the edge of the field that day, on the right of the basket, when viewed from the front.
« The action goes very fast “begins by remembering the author of a series of shots to immortalize the moment. Jason Terry has just recovered the leather, Boston is then preparing to play in attack. As with each coming and going, photographers like Chris, located near the visitors’ attack basket, take the opportunity to look back at the images that have just been captured.
« We lower our box, we look at the screen, we zoom in… I do that but out of the corner of my eye, for no particular reason, I can’t speak of flair or instinct, I felt the interception. I see her coming. That of Dwyane Wade who, with a back pass, finds Mario Chalmers, who finds Norris Cole. Which one finds… the “King”.
The focus is there
The photographer, who still has his camera between his legs at the start of the action, recovers ” immediately to shoot. I have my eye in the eyecup. I understand what is happening, I see that it is an ‘alley-oop’ pass. There, I see LeBron… “Not really the time to think, you have to trigger, a “ small burst in the order of three photos for such a dunk. “ Not the most explosive dunk “according to him, and a series” easy to take due to the Heat player’s vertical rise.
An impressive verticality of stability compared to the player of the Celtics, whose impotence is significant on the facies, which gives more the air of a disarticulated puppet. “ By taking this photo, you don’t spontaneously say to yourself: ‘There, you have something’. You feel the audience roar, but your first reaction is, ‘Is the focus right?’ »
He is. Absolute sharpness. Above all, Chris is one of the few photographers to have captured the scene, which ended with a technical fault for LeBron James (for having fixed “Jet”…). ” Nobody next to me got the dunk, everybody had the box down “, he remembers, specifying that a photographer located on the left of the basket captured an image. He knows it very well, a photo, in the world of sport in particular, means very little.
Important for his career
On game night, after sending his roommate in Boston a photo of his camera body with the famous shot, Chris Elise simply felt like he had ” does the job ». « At the time, I did the job on a good deed. Without yet realizing how much this “highlight” will mark the spirits, to the point of being declined in a poster signed by the author himselfwhile, almost ten years later, Jason Terry is still questioned about it…
In addition to marking the history of the league, this image will be important for the career of the photographer. Because in the wake of his series, he caught the eye of NBA Entertainment, the production branch of the big league, with whom he will start collaborating.
His only regret with this series of photos? ” I said to myself ‘Too bad it wasn’t in the playoffs’ even if the rivalry between the two teams was already well established at that time. Tonight, carried by a gala LeBron James (37 points and 12 assists), the leaders of the Eastern Conference and future NBA champions had narrowly won (103-105) ahead of Jeff Green’s Celtics (43 points!) .
« He has a life this dunk “, ends our photographer who we let you guess, when he talks about his job, which shot he likes to show first…