Video: Dennis Smith Jr. bounces the ball to himself for alley-oop slam
The Dunk Contest is long over but Dallas Mavericks rookie Dennis Smith Jr. — a participant in the midseason event — may be thinking that he’s still out there to garner “tens.”
During the Mavs’ game against the Portland Trail Blazers, the high-flying point guard lit up the crowd with yet another amazing play.
Nearing the one-minute mark with the Mavs up by six points, Smith found himself in a battle for the loose ball against the Blazers’ Damian Lillard. The former, spry legs and all, tipped the ball all the way to Dallas’ end of the court.
But he wasn’t just going to lay it in when he has the entire half of the court all to himself. Smith went into playground mode and bounced the ball high to set himself up for an alley-oop dunk.
— NBA (@NBA) April 4, 2018
It was a perfect exclamation to a big night for the first-year player who notched 18 points, eight rebounds, eight assists, and two steals in this game. More importantly, or at least in an ideal world where tanking is nonexistent, the Mavs won over the playoff-bound Blazers 115-109.
Smith may not win the Rookie of the Year award this season, but he has definitely raised everyone’s awareness that the future in Dallas looks bright with him in tow. On the season, Smith is averaging 15.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, 5.0 assists, and 1.0 steal per game for the Mavs.
The Mavs may be playing — allegedly — for ping pong balls now, and if they manage to hit the jackpot come draft night, they could pair Smith with another potential star.