Denzel Valentine

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Denzel Valentine
20170213 Villanova-Depaul accidental Denzel Valentine.jpg
Valentine sitting courtside at Allstate Arena during a VillanovaDePaul game
No. 45 – Chicago Bulls
PositionShooting guard
LeagueNBA
Personal information
Born (1993-11-16) November 16, 1993 (age 25)
Lansing, Michigan
NationalityAmerican
Listed height6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Listed weight210 lb (95 kg)
Career information
High schoolJ. W. Sexton (Lansing, Michigan)
CollegeMichigan State (2012–2016)
NBA draft2016 / Round: 1 / Pick: 14th overall
Selected by the Chicago Bulls
Playing career2016–present
Career history
2016–presentChicago Bulls
2017Windy City Bulls
Career highlights and awards
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com

Denzel Robert Valentine (born November 16, 1993) is an American professional basketball player for the Chicago Bulls of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played college basketball for Michigan State; as a senior, Valentine became the first player in Michigan State history to be recognized as the National Player of the Year by The Associated Press. He also earned other player of the year awards from the NABC, USA Today, Sports Illustrated, NBC Sports, and Basketball Times in addition to being named a unanimous First-Team All-American.

High school career[edit]

Valentine attended J. W. Sexton High School, where he was coached by his father, Carlton Valentine (former Michigan State player),[1] and played alongside future Michigan State teammate Bryn Forbes and Iowa basketball player Anthony Clemmons.

As a sophomore, Valentine averaged 10.9 points, 5.8 assists and 6.3 rebounds, leading Sexton to a state title game. He was awarded 2010 Class B honorable mention all-state.[2]

Valentine averaged 14 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists per game as a senior, leading Sexton to a 27–1 record, he was selected as the Lansing State Journal Player of the Year and Associated Press Class B Player of the Year as a senior.[2] As a recruit, Valentine was nationally ranked in the top 100 by Rivals.com (#81, #15 shooting guard), ESPNU100 (#98, #26 small forward), and Scout.com (#27 small forward).[2]

College career[edit]

Following his successful freshman year, Valentine was the recipient of MSU's Unsung Player Award (voted on by players);[2] as a sophomore, he earned honorable-mention All-Big Ten (Coaches and Media).[2]

With Adreian Payne and Gary Harris leaving MSU for the NBA Draft, Keith Appling leaving due to graduation (eventually to the NBA), the dismissal of Kenny Kaminski, and the transfer of Russell Byrd, Valentine saw an increase in leadership and an expanded role on the team as a junior. Before the season started, he was awarded one of the three captain spots. Perhaps one of Valentine's most memorable moments came on Valentine's Day 2015, he hit the game winning shot in a matchup versus Ohio State and finished with 17 points,[3] his junior season saw him earn Orlando Classic All-Tournament Team (averaging 19.3 points and 5.0 rebounds in three games), Third Team All-Big Ten, USBWA All-District V, and NCAA East Regional All-Tournament Team honors.[2]

On November 17, 2015, the senior Valentine became the 4th player in Michigan State history to record a triple-double, he had 29 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists in Michigan State's 79-73 victory over the fourth-ranked Kansas Jayhawks.[4] It was the first triple-double of the 2015–16 NCAA Division I men's basketball season.[5] On December 21, it was announced that Valentine would be sidelined for 2–3 weeks after he underwent an arthroscopic knee surgery, he returned on January 10, 2016.[6][7]

He was named to the 35-man midseason watchlist for the Naismith Trophy on February 11.[8] On February 29, he was named a semifinalist of the Oscar Robertson Trophy.[9] Valentine was also a finalist for the John R. Wooden Award, the Adolph Rupp Trophy, Associated Press College Basketball Player of the Year, and the NABC Player of the Year.

Valentine finished the 2015–16 regular season averaging 19.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 7.5 assists as MSU finished in second place in the Big Ten. On March 8, USA Today named Valentine National Player of the Year over Oklahoma's Buddy Hield;[10] the Big Ten also announced that Valentine was the Big Ten's Player of the Year.[11] On March 9, Valentine was named to the Sporting News All-American Team.[12]

Valentine's senior year at Michigan State saw him ranked among the NCAA leaders when it came to three-point shooting,[13] he accumulated many awards and won Michigan State's first College Basketball Player of the Year Award since Draymond Green won the NABC Player of the Year in 2012. Valentine shined during the Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis, earning tournament Most Outstanding Player while winning Michigan State's fifth championship.[14] Valentine, along with Bryn Forbes, were selected to the NCAA College Basketball Three-Point Contest following his senior year.[15] Valentine defeated his teammate in the first round of the competition when he rattled off 22 points compared to Forbes' 10. Valentine was eliminated from the competition in the semifinals when he hit 17 points, needing 23 to advance. Valentine's senior year also proved very effective in raising his draft stock. Valentine went from being potentially undrafted to being seen as a potential lottery pick in the 2016 NBA draft.[16]

Awards[edit]

University awards[edit]

  • George Alderton Male Athlete of the Year (Michigan State University Athlete of the Year)[17]

Team awards[edit]

  • Michigan State Team MVP Media[18]
  • Michigan State Team MVP Players/Coaches
  • Michigan State Antonio Smith Guts and Glue Award

Weekly awards[edit]

  • Naismith National Player of the Week 2/16/16[19]
  • Lute Olson Award National Player of the Week 11/30/15[20]
  • CS Madness – National Player of the Week 11/22/15[21]
  • CS Madness – Big Ten Player of the Week 11/29/15[22]
  • CS Madness – Big Ten Player of the Week 11/22/15[21]
  • BTN – Big Ten Player of the Week 2/15/16
  • BTN – Big Ten Player of the Week 2/8/16
  • BTN – Big Ten Player of the Week 11/23/15

National Player of the Year awards[edit]

All-American awards[edit]
Big Ten/Regional awards[edit]
  • CBS – Big Ten Player of the Year[54]
  • CollegeInsider.com – Big Ten Player of the Year[55]
  • AP – Big Ten Player of the Year[56]
  • FOX – Big Ten Player of the Year[57]
  • Bleacher Report – Big Ten Player of the Year[58]
  • Big Ten Player of the Year (Media)[59]
  • Big Ten Player of the Year (Coaches)[60]
  • All-Big Ten 1st Team Media[61]
  • All-Big Ten 1st Team Coaches[62]
  • CBS – Big Ten 1st Team[54]
  • Bleacher Report – All Big Ten 1st Team[63]
  • Big Ten Tournament Most Outstanding Player Award[64]
  • Big Ten's All Tournament Team[65]
  • USBWA – District V Player of the Year[66]
  • USBWA – District V All 1st Team[66]
Mid-season awards[edit]
  • Bleacher Report – Mid Season All American 1st Team[67]
  • Sporting News – Mid Season All American 1st Team[68]
Preseason awards[edit]
  • Preseason Wooden Award Watch List[69]
  • Bleacher Report – Preseason Player of the Year Honorable Mention[70]
  • Bleacher Report – Big Ten Preseason Player of the Year Honorable Mention[71]
  • NBC – Preseason 2nd Team All-American[72]
  • Sports Illustrated – Preseason 2nd Team All-American[73]
  • CBS -Preseason 3rd Team All-American[74]
  • Bleacher Report – Preseason 3rd Team All-American[75]
  • USA Today – Preseason All-American Honorable Mention[76]
  • College Sports Madness – Preseason All-Big Ten 1st Team[77]
  • Big Ten Network – Preseason Big Ten 1st Team[78]

Professional career[edit]

Chicago Bulls (2016–present)[edit]

Valentine during the 2017 NBA Summer League.

On June 23, 2016, Valentine was selected by the Chicago Bulls with the 14th overall pick in the 2016 NBA draft.[79][80] On July 16, 2016, he signed his rookie scale contract with the Bulls.[81] Two days later, Valentine hit a turnaround jumper as time expired to lift the Bulls to an 84–82 overtime victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves in the Las Vegas Summer League championship game.[82]

On January 2, 2017, Valentine, who had played just four total minutes in the previous seven games, played 18 minutes against the Charlotte Hornets and hit his first three three-pointers, finishing with a then season-high nine points, he exited with an ankle injury in the second half, as the Bulls went on to win 118–111.[83] On January 10, 2017, he posted career highs with 19 points and five three-pointers in a 101–99 loss to the Washington Wizards.[84] On March 18, 2017, Valentine recorded his first career double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds in a 95–86 win over the Utah Jazz.[85] During his rookie season, Valentine received multiple assignments to the Windy City Bulls, Chicago's D-League affiliate.[86]

On November 26, 2017, Valentine had 14 points and career highs of 13 rebounds and seven assists in a 100–93 loss to the Miami Heat.[87] On January 18, 2018, he scored 19 points against the Houston Rockets.[88] Two days later, he scored a career-high 20 points in a 122–119 double-overtime win over the New York Knicks.[89] On March 17, 2018, he hit eight 3-pointers and scored a career-best 34 points in a 114–109 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.[90] On April 4, 2018, Valentine underwent arthroscopic debridement on his left knee, which ruled him out for the rest of the season.[91]

In September 2018, Valentine was diagnosed with a sprained left ankle during the team's training camp and was expected to miss one to two weeks. However, in late October, the Bulls announced he was suffering from a bone bruise, not a sprain, and would miss an additional two weeks.[92] On November 19, after missing the first 17 games of the season,[92] Valentine was diagnosed with ongoing ankle instability.[93] Following a left ankle stabilization procedure on November 27, he was ruled out for the season.[94]

Career statistics[edit]

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high

NBA[edit]

Regular season[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2016–17 Chicago 57 0 17.1 .354 .351 .778 2.6 1.1 .5 .1 5.1
2017–18 Chicago 77 37 27.2 .417 .386 .745 5.1 3.2 .8 .1 10.2
Career 134 37 22.9 .399 .374 .754 4.1 2.3 .7 .1 8.0

Playoffs[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2017 Chicago 4 0 5.5 .333 .250 - 2.0 .5 .0 .3 1.3
Career 4 0 5.5 .333 .250 - 2.0 .5 .0 .3 1.3

College[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2012–13 Michigan State 36 15 20.8 .445 .281 .667 4.1 2.4 .8 .3 5.0
2013–14 Michigan State 38 33 29.4 .408 .377 .677 6.0 3.8 1.0 .3 8.0
2014–15 Michigan State 39 39 33.2 .443 .416 .826 6.3 4.3 .9 .2 14.5
2015–16 Michigan State 31 30 33.0 .462 .444 .853 7.5 7.8 1.0 .2 19.2
Career 144 117 29.0 .442 .408 .779 5.9 4.4 .9 .3 11.4

National team career[edit]

Valentine was a member of USA Basketball's senior men's national team at the 2015 Pan American Games which was held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada; the U.S. team captured the tournament's bronze medal, with a 3–2 record The following year, Valentine joined the USA Basketball Select Team to train against the 2016 Rio Olympic team.[95]

Personal life[edit]

Valentine is the son of Carlton and Kathy Valentine, his older brother, Drew, played collegiate basketball for Oakland University, and is now an assistant coach at Loyola University in Chicago.[2] Valentine considers fellow NBA player and Michigan State alumni Draymond Green "like a big brother".[96]

On April 7, 2016, Valentine and his coach at Michigan State, Tom Izzo, were featured as guests on Dancing With the Stars where they learned from Artem Chigvintsev and Edyta Sliwinska.[97]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]