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Joshua Smith (born December 5, 1985 in College Parkmarker, Georgiamarker) is an Americanmarker professional basketball player with the Atlanta Hawks of the NBA. Josh was one of five kids born to Paulette and Pete Smith. His siblings are Walter, Phebe, Kasola and Shanti. His popular nickname is "J-Smoove".

Smith attended John McEachern High Schoolmarker. For his senior year, Smith transferred to Oak Hill Academy. As a player for Oak Hill's basketball team, he first earned his reputation as a consummate shot-blocker, which he would maintain in the NBA. He played alongside current Atlanta Hawk teammate Randolph Morris and the Orlando Magic's Dwight Howard on the highly regarded Atlanta Celtics AAU team in the summer of 2003.

Having entered the league straight out of high school, Smith has publicly disagreed with the rule change that prohibited high school players from entering the NBA Entry Draft.

NBA career

Smith was selected by the Atlanta Hawks with the 17th overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft.

He won the NBA Slam Dunk Contest during his rookie year in the 2005 NBA All-Star Weekend. He averaged 9.7 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.95 blocks per game for the 2004–05 season and was selected to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team. For the 2005–06 season, Smith averaged 2.25 blocks per game, ranking seventh in the NBA.

After the NBA All-Star Weekend, he continued his steady development. He finished second in the NBA in total blocks, 4th in blocks per game and averaged 15.0 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 4.1 apg, 3.1 bpg and 1.0 spg after the All-Star break and his contribution helped the Hawks double their win total of 13 wins from the previous season to finish 26-56.

On March 3, 2007, Smith broke the 500-block mark, making him the youngest player to do so in NBA history.Smith ended the 2006–07 season with 16.4 points per game, 8.6 rebounds per game, 3.3 assists, 1.4 steals and 2.9 blocks, dramatically improving on his previous season's stats. Leading the Hawks after Joe Johnson's season-ending injury, Smith produced a career high 32 points and 19 rebounds in Johnson's absence. He eclipsed this mark on November 17, 2007 with a new career high of 38 points on the road against the Milwaukee Bucks.

On August 8, 2008, Smith signed an offer sheet to play with the Memphis Grizzlies, but the Hawks quickly matched the offer sheet. Smith was told by Atlanta to go out as a restricted free agent to test the market, putting the pressure on Smith to essentially go out and set his price.

On October 30, 2009, in a home game vs. the Washington Wizards, Smith became the youngest player (at 23 years old) to reach 900 blocks.

NBA career statistics

Regular season

2004–05
Atlanta
74 59 27.7 .455 .174 .688 6.2 1.7 .8 2.0 9.7
2005–06
Atlanta
80 73 32.0 .425 .309 .719 6.6 2.4 .8 2.6 11.3
2006–07
Atlanta
72 72 36.8 .439 .250 .693 8.6 3.3 1.4 2.9 16.4
2007–08
Atlanta
81 81 35.5 .457 .253 .710 8.2 3.4 1.5 2.8 17.2
2008–09
Atlanta
69 69 35.1 .492 .299 .588 7.2 2.4 1.9 1.6 15.6
Career
334 312 33.2 .447 .260 .698 7.4 2.7 1.2 2.4 13.8

Playoffs

2007–08
Atlanta
7 7 33.9 .398 .167 .841 6.4 2.9 1.7 2.9 15.7
2008-09
Atlanta
11 11 37.3 .421 .133 .732 7.5 2.2 1.1 1.5 17.1
Career
18 18 35.9 .413 .152 .774 7.1 2.4 1.3 2.1 16.6

References

  1. http://www.nba.com/playerfile/josh_smith/bio.html
  2. ESPN -New York vs. Atlanta - Recap - March 03, 2007
  3. NBA.com: Hawks at Bucks Game Info


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