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Dennis Smith Jr. Finishes 2nd Season Optimistic of Future in New York: YEAR 2 RECAP

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Former NC State ACC Freshman of the Year Dennis Smith Jr.’s 2nd season in the NBA has officially come to a close.

Smith Jr. finished the year averaging 13.6 points and 4.8 assists in 53 games played. He saw his numbers increase after he was traded from the Mavs to the Knicks midseason, averaging 14.7 points and 5.4 assists for New York.

DSJ battled lower back injuries all year long, in both Dallas and New York. With that being said, Smith Jr. began missing games due to “illness” in early January, which was around the same time rumors began swirling that he was unhappy with his situation in Dallas, desiring to be traded.

Traded he was.

His best game in Dallas this year was on October 28th, when he scored 27 points, tying a career high.

Twice since arriving in New York, Smith Jr. dropped 10+ dimes, and one of those was a part of his 2nd ever triple-double on January 30th (13 points, 10 rebounds and 15 assists).

Smith Jr.’s biggest game for the Knicks this year came on February 8th, when he scored 31 points (season-high), accompanied by 8 assists.

Battling a lower back injury closing out the year (missing 10 of final 14 games), DSJ showed his grit and commitment to New York and his teammates on Tuesday night, scoring 25 points while less than 100% while he was banged up.

This was ultimately his final game of the season, missing the season finale.

Despite the awfulness that was the Knicks in 2018-19, Smith Jr. has reason to be optimistic about the future. It seems highly likely that Kevin Durant will be in New York next year, and if the Knick Nation’s dreams come true, they will scoop up the phenom named Zion Williamson in the 2019 NBA Draft.

Smith Jr. has one-year remaining on his 3-year rookie contract ($11.5 million/all guaranteed). After next season, he will be a restricted free agent.

Pack in the Pros

Phoenix Suns Trade TJ Warren to the Indiana Pacers

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Former NC State ACC Player of the Year TJ Warren was traded by the Phoenix Suns to the Indiana Pacers prior to last nights NBA Draft.

Rumors were swirling that the Suns could be moving Warren to clear cap space, and the Mavericks, Magic, Spurs, Pacers, and Pistons all reached out.

Warren still has 3-years and $35 million left on his current contract. The Suns inked a 4-year extension worth $50 million in 2017.

Here’s the remainder of the contract the Pacers are inheriting.

HoopHype

Last year was Warren’s 5th year in the league, and he averaged 18.0 points per game (2nd best), and a career best 42.8% from three-point land.

The Pacers are getting a deal.

Warren will have the privilege of being coached by former NC State Guard Nate McMillan.

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Philip Rivers Tied for 2nd Best Odds to Win 2019 NFL MVP

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Football season is creeping up on us, and Vegas is itching for people to chuck money their way. According to some very early betting lines, NC State legend, Los Angeles Chargers Quarterback Philip Rivers is tied for the 2nd best odds to win the 2019 NFL MVP Award.

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At the age of 36, Rivers’ QB Rating of 105.5, 32 touchdowns, and 68.5% completion percentage, were all tied for the 2nd best marks of his 15 year career.

Last year Rivers ranked 8th in Completion Percentage (68.3%), 8th in passing yards (4,308), 6th in passing touchdowns (32), and 5th in QB Rating (105.5).

Rivers led the Chargers to a 12-4 record last year.

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TJ Warren, Terry Henderson & Malik Abu Invade Local Summer League

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The Ultimate Basketball Association, a local Pro-Am League, is currently in session, and 3 former NC State players have come back to the Triangle to show out.

TJ Warren is on a team with Terry Henderson, and in the video below, the two of them face off against Malik Abu’s squad.

Compliments to the Hoop State Network for the video released Monday.

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Will Wilson Signs Contract with Los Angeles Angels

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Former NC State Shortstop Will Wilson has officially signed his contract with the Los Angeles Angels after being taken 15th overall in the 2019 MLB Draft.

The shortstop from North Carolina State will receive an under-slot bonus of $3.4 million, said a club official who was not authorized to publicly comment. The value of the 15th pick with which the Angels chose Wilson was $3,885,800.

LA Times

Wilson became the first player in NC State history to earn ACC Defensive Player of the Year honors this year, and also has picked up All-American honors.

It was fitting that Wilson was in attendance at the Angels game tonight, making an appearance on the big screen.

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