1984 at the All-Star Game in Denver is when the NBA brought the Dunk Contest back (sort of, it was an old ABA thing). Dr. J was the favorite. Dominique Wilkins was competing.
And Larry Nance won the thing. With a pretty cool dunk.
I’m pretty sure the dunks themselves have not gotten much better (if at all), it’s just now they need to be accompanied by showmanship. Like jumping over a car.
Enjoy this little video appetizer to start your weekend.