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What Dennis Smith brings to the Mavericks

Former NC State point guard Dennis Smith Jr. was selected by the Dallas Mavericks with the ninth pick in the 2017 NBA Draft Thursday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.Smith has a chance to be the first top-10 pick out of NC State since Tom Gugliotta was selected with the No. 6 pick by the Washington Wizards in 1992 draft.Bio: After being rated as a five-star recruit out of Trinity Christian School in Fayetteville, N.C., Smith enrolled at NC State in January 2016 but didn’t play that season while recovering from a torn ACL. The club recently sent a couple of representatives to his pro day in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Smith had a video phone conversation with Nelson, Carlisle and former Dallas guard Michael Finley, now a member of the front office.”This is a huge day for us”, Rick Carlisle said as he addressed the media shortly after selecting Smith Jr.While other guards De’Aaron Fox and Lonzo Ball were making deep runs in the draft, Smith was sitting at home on the couch not being seen on the big stage.”I thought he was as good as any of them”, Carlisle said in regards to Smith stacking up to the likes of Fultz, Ball and Fox.President of basketball operations Donnie Nelson said before the draft Thursday night that point guard was the team’s biggest need, and the club made a decision to address it.For the city of Dallas, he is going to bring confidence and flare to the back court that we simply haven’t seen before at the point guard spot.If not for the injury, Nelson joked, Smith’s vertical “would have been 50 inches” last season.If he falls that far, Smith may end up making the teams that picked ahead of him regret it.”We’re getting a guy that is an instant impact guy”. And if we had drafted a lot higher, he was the guy that we had circled.”I’m thankful to be a part of the Dallas Mavericks organization”, Smith, Jr., said “and I’ll be a point guard to come in and just compete and try to win every game that I can”. “You don’t want to get too excited about players, but he’s got all the right stuff”. He was a 35.9 percent shooter from three-point territory. A unusual set of circumstances panned out, a surprise pick or two, and we got our guy. I’m definitely motivated by (dropping to the 9th pick). But this is a historic night for us, and we fulfilled a great need.