DALLAS (105.3 The Fan) – Dennis Smith Jr. was already getting major hype from the media and the fans heading into his rookie season, but now he’s getting praised by his peers.
The 2017 NBA rookie draft class had an opportunity to vote for who they thought would win the Rookie of the Year award, and they chose Smith as the likeliest to take home the hardware.
Smith received 25.7 percent of the vote, edging out Lakers point guard Lonzo Ball (20.0 percent) and 76ers point guard and No. 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz (17.1 percent).
Among the other votes, Smith was tied for third in most-likely to have the best career (10.5 percent), second in the biggest steal at where he was selected in the draft (13.5 percent) and the most athletic among the rookies (43.6 percent).
The six-foot-three guard out of NC State averaged 18.1 points, 4.6 rebounds and 6.2 assists while shooting 45.5 percent from the field as a freshman.
In six summer league games, Smith averaged 17.3 points and 4.2 assists in route to being named to the All-NBA Summer League First Team.
Smith was selected by the Mavs with the 9th overall pick in June’s draft.