As I was watching Dennis Smith shred through the Duke defense, I thought to myself, who does this remind me of? The smooth handles and excellent shot immediately made me think of Kyrie Irving. The former Duke star has arguably the best handles in the NBA, and has shown he can take hold of games. Smith was heavily recruited out of high school by the likes of Duke, Kentucky, and North Carolina, but decided to attend North Carolina State. Smith was instrumental in the huge win against Duke. He showed up in a big way as he led the Wolfpack with 32 points and 6 assists. That win against Duke proved that NC State could contend in the NCAA tournament.
Smith has an excellent skill set which should transfer to the NBA. Not only does he have excellent ball handling skills, but he is an amazing athlete with game-changing speed. He is a superb shooter who has a killer step back jumper. Smith is also an above average defender. All of these skills show the making of an all-around superstar. While I’m not saying that Smith will immediately become a star, but all the ingredients are there for him to become one.
This draft class is one of the best in recent memory, but Smith should still be a top selection. Most mock drafts have him in the top ten of the draft; some have him in the top five even. There are plenty of teams that are in need of an athletic point guard, and Smith fits that billing. A team like the Sacramento Kings could be a perfect fit for him. Smith running pick and rolls with Demarcus Cousins would give the Kings a young core to build around. Darren Collison is not the Kings’ point guard of the future, and should give way to Smith if the Kings select him in the draft.
Comparing Smith to Kyrie Irving is definitely lofty praise for the young guard, but there are plenty of similarities in the two players’ games. Both have above average handles and amazing crossovers. They are also both prolific scorers with great step-back jumpers. As Smith has shown early in his college career, he can take over games with his three point shooting. That right there is something that Kyrie has been doing for the Cavs upon entering the league. All in all, Smith has a lot more games left in his college career, but has shown all the makings of a star.
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