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Dennis Smith, Jr., of N.C. State heads to Dallas Mavericks with the No. 9 pick

N.C. State's Dennis Smith Jr. (4) passes around Clemson's Marcquise Reed (2) during the second half of Clemson's 75-61 victory over N.C. State in the 2017 New York Life ACC Tournament at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., Tuesday, March 7, 2017.
N.C. State's Dennis Smith Jr. (4) passes around Clemson's Marcquise Reed (2) during the second half of Clemson's 75-61 victory over N.C. State in the 2017 New York Life ACC Tournament at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., Tuesday, March 7, 2017. ehyman@newsobserver.com

Dennis Smith Jr. had been targeted by the Dallas Mavericks and the New York Knicks entering the NBA Draft.

On Thursday night, he learned his fate.

The former N.C. State point guard was selected by Dallas with the No. 9 pick at Barclays Center.

“It did [go as expected]," Smith Jr. said on ESPN. "It’s all God’s plan.”

The 6-foot-3 Smith Jr., who averaged 18.1 points, 6.2 assists and 4.6 rebounds in his lone season with the Wolfpack, has been compared to Russell Westbrook and Derrick Rose.

He will now be charged with revitalizing a Mavericks team that finished 33-49 a year ago.

Asked what he'll bring to his new team, he said, "Doing the same thing that I did last year, continuing to work hard, believing in God and controlling what I can control.”

After falling to No. 9, Smith Jr. may end up making the teams that picked ahead of him regret it.

"I want to win Rookie of the Year," he said Wednesday at the Grand Hyatt Hotel on NBA Draft media day. "Not too many [individual] accolades, I just want to come in and be the best teammate I can be be, the best player I can be and I think everything else will take care of itself."

Former N.C. State assistant Orlando Early said the chip Smith carries on his shoulder will help him in the NBA.

“I think his competitive spirit, his mental toughness, he brings that," he said in May. "He’s still going to learn. He’s got a lot to learn just like every guy in the draft, but right off the bat his competitiveness and his ability to score the ball is going to help whoever is in position to draft him.”

Smith Jr. tore his ACL the summer before he enrolled at N.C. State. He then enrolled in January 2016 to get a head start on college. He says the knee isn't an issue at all.

"Two months after my surgery, I was back dunking so my knee never really was a problem," he said. "It was a freak injury and it motivated me to strengthen everything else around my leg so in turn I became more athletic, more explosive."

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