Mario Hezonja
Mario Hezonja
24-Year-Old ForwardF
New York Knicks
2018 Fantasy Outlook
The fifth overall selection in the 2015 NBA Draft, Hezonja put together a few very pedestrian seasons to start his career, which prompted the Magic to decline his fourth-year option prior to the 2017-18 campaign. As expected, Hezonja started the year off as a minor contributor and over the first 20 games of the season, he averaged just 2.9 points and 1.8 rebounds across 9.8 minutes. However, in mid-December the Magic finally started to get him integrated into the rotation more and 23-year-old eventually became a significant piece of the rotation, mainly due to the fact that star power forward Aaron Gordon was dealing with injuries. In the final 55 games of the year, Hezonja nearly tripled his workload with 26.5 minutes and went on to average 12.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.5 three-pointers. That prompted him to have plenty of suitors this offseason and likely made the Magic regret declining his option. Hezonja now heads to New York where he'll likely operate as one of the first bigs off the bench. There's a chance the Knicks opt to throw Kevin Knox, the team's ninth overall pick this year, into the fire early and give him rights to the starting power forward job. Still, the rookie will likely deal with some growing pains, which should allow Hezonja to get on the court quite a bit at both small forward and power forward. A workload in the mid-to-low 20's seems realistic, which should keep his numbers fairly close to the stat line he posted in his final year with Orlando. That means Hezonja is likely worth a look in the later rounds of deeper leagues as a player that can contribute solid, but not spectacular numbers across the box score. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year, $6.5 million contract with the Knicks in July of 2018.
To start finale
FNew York Knicks
April 10, 2019
Hezonja (illness) will start Wednesday against the Pistons, Ian Begley of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
Hezonja was battling an illness earlier in the day, but he's been cleared to take the floor and will be in the starting lineup at point guard. He missed Tuesday's win over Chicago, but prior to that Hezonja averaged 25.0 points, 10.3 rebounds and 7.0 assists across his previous three starts.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2017
2016
2015
After being selected with the fifth overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, Hezonja has been a huge disappoint for the Magic. In the 2016-17 season specifically, Hezonja actually saw his playing time fall from 17.8 minutes to just 14.8, which translated to averages of 4.9 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.0 assist. The shooting guard shot a meager 29.9 percent from the three-point line, which is well below average for a player of his position. He ultimately lost the trust of coach Frank Vogel and fell into a deep reserve role on the wing. That certainly won't be helped during the upcoming campaign with the addition of first-round pick Jonathan Issac and free agent pick-up Jonathon Simmons. Look for Hezonja's role to remain unchanged and potentially even fall once again, unless he puts together a strong training camp. That should keep him off the Fantasy radar in the majority of formats.
Hezonja was coveted by many teams heading into the 2015 NBA Draft after showcasing a bundle of athleticism and three-point shooting ability while playing for Spanish club FC Barcelona, but it was the Magic who were able to reel him in with the fifth overall pick. As a rookie, the 21-year-old from Croatia was a rotation player from Day 1 under former Magic coach Scott Skiles, but was brought along slowly, earning increased playing time in each successive month of the season. He concluded the year with three double-digit scoring performances in a row, capping off his first-year campaign with averages of 6.1 points (on 43.3% shooting), 2.2 boards, 1.4 assists and 0.8 three-pointers in 17.9 minutes per game. While Hezonja exhibited flashes of being a viable starter down the road and seemed to gain confidence as the season wore on, consistency was a problem for him, which is often the case for many young players. The upcoming campaign should prove more revelatory for Hezonja, as the Magic will be counting on him to turn more of his potential into actual production that can help the team win. With few competent three-point shooters on the Magic roster beyond Evan Fournier, Hezonja could settle in as the sixth or seventh man for new coach Frank Vogel. Hezonja’s draft pedigree and the expectation that he’ll tap into some more of his considerable upside will make him a decent dart late in fantasy drafts.
Hezonja became the highest-drafted Croatian player when the Magic selected him fifth overall in the 2015 NBA Draft. In the week leading up to the draft, Hezonja completed his best season with FC Barcelona in the Euroleague. Over 66 international contests, he provided 5.9 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and 1.1 three-pointers in 15 minutes per game last year. Heralded as a knockdown shooter, Hezonja converted 39 percent of his three-pointers on the shortened international three-point line, nearly two feet closer from above the break. He struggled with the NBA line during summer league, connecting on 4-of-14 tries over two games. Hezonja also showed an ability to get to the basket and stick his man on defense. Aside from adjusting to the extended arc, the 20-year-old forward offers the Magic elite athleticism and extreme cockiness, two attributes that escape the stat sheet. Hezonja doesn't project as a starter for two reasons: the Magic are stacked with young, talented wings, and new Magic coach Scott Skiles possesses a track record of minimizing rookie responsibility. He'll compete with fellow international teammate Evan Fournier for playing time off the bench.
More Fantasy News
Questionable for finale
FNew York Knicks
Illness
April 10, 2019
Hezonja (illness) is questionable for Wednesday's contest against the Pistons.
ANALYSIS
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Out sick Tuesday
FNew York Knicks
Illness
April 9, 2019
Hezonja is out with an illness Tuesday against the Bulls, Steve Popper of Newsday reports.
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Expected to stick at point guard
FNew York Knicks
April 8, 2019
Coach David Fizdale said after Sunday's 113-110 win over the Wizards that he plans on deploying Hezonja as the team's starting point guard for the final two games of the season, Ian Begley of ESPN.com reports.
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Drops 30 points on hapless Wizards
FNew York Knicks
April 7, 2019
Hezonja finished with 30 points (12-21 FG, 3-6 3Pt, 3-4 FT), six rebounds, five assists, and two steals in 36 minutes during Sunday's 113-110 victory over the Wizards.
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First career triple-double
FNew York Knicks
April 6, 2019
Hezonja scored 16 points (6-11 FG, 0-3 3Pt, 4-6 FT) while adding 16 rebounds, 11 assists and a steal in 42 minutes during Friday's 120-96 loss to the Rockets.
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