Mario Hezonja
Mario Hezonja
25-Year-Old ForwardF
Portland Trail Blazers
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Hezonja recorded career-high averages in rebounds (4.1) and assists (1.5) in 2018-19. However, he also appeared in a career-low 58 games, logged career-worst percentages from beyond the arc (27.6) and the charity stripe (76.3) and amassed his lowest blocks average (0.1) through four seasons. Hezonja has developed a reputation for being inconsistent, with the negatives seemingly outweighing the positives at this point. Even still, the Trail Blazers picked Hezonja up this offseason, and there aren't a lot of wings on the roster who are clearly ahead of him on the depth chart. This iteration of the Blazers figures to be the best team Hezonja has ever played for, so it's possible he'll improve both his efficiency and production thanks to the playmaking of Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. Still, Hezonja has only shown flashes thus far, and if he fails to produce there won't necessarily be ample opportunities on a team that projects to be as competitive as Portland. As a result, he's a risky player to bet on in fantasy drafts. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a two-year, $3.66 million contract with the Trail Blazers in July of 2019. Contract includes $1.92 million player option for 2020-21.
Personal Bio

Mario Hezonja, son of Ronald and Petrica, was born in 1995 in Dubrovnik, Croatia. His favorite player growing up was Kobe Bryant. Before coming to the NBA, Hezonja spent three seasons at FC Barcelona, playing in a combined 55 games over his last year in Spain. He represents Croatia at the national level and has participated in the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup and 2016 Olympics. Before that, he helped lead the Croatian Junior Team to a Gold at the 2012 U17 World Championship. Away from the court, Hezonja plays soccer and water polo. You can follow him on Twitter @Mariohezonja and on Instagram @Supermariohezonja.

College/International Summary

A native of Croatia, Hezonja spent time with FC Barcelona of the Spanish ACB League from 2012 through 2014. After spending most of the 2012-13 season with Barcelona's second team, he moved up to the primary team the next year. Hezonja appeared in 20 ACB regular season games and averaged 5.4 points. The following season, he saw action in all 31 of the club's regular season contests, posting 4.7 points in 14.7 minutes. As a member of the Croatian National Team, Hezonja led the Junior Team to a gold medal at the 2012 U17 World Championship. He joined the Senior National Team for the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, the latter ending in a fifth-place finish.

Solid showing in 25 minutes
FPortland Trail Blazers
August 9, 2020
Hezonja generated 12 points (5-10 FG, 2-5 3Pt), seven rebounds, two assists and two steals in 25 minutes during Sunday's 124-121 win over the 76ers.
ANALYSIS
Hezonja had by far his best showing since the restart. He's likely to continue earning decent minutes off the bench given the long-term absences of Trevor Ariza (personal) and Rodney Hood (Achilles).
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Past Season Summaries
2018

Hezonja joined the Knicks for the 2018-19 season and appeared in 58 games. He started 24 of those contests and averaged 20.8 minutes per game. A leg injury cost him over a month of action between February and March. The 6-foot-8 forward averaged 8.8 points per game on 41.2 percent shooting, including 27.6 percent from three-point range. Hezonja also set new career-best marks with 1.5 assists and 4.1 rebounds per game. He had a terrific three-game stretch in April, during which he averaged 25.0 points, 10.3 rebounds, and seven assists on 53.7 percent shooting. That stretch included his first career triple-double (April 5 against Houston) and his first career 30-point performance (April 7 against Washington). Hezonja scored in double-figures in four consecutive games between Jan. 4 and Jan. 11. During that run, he averaged 13.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 3.0 steals on 50 percent shooting.

2017

Hezonja gradually earned more playing time in his third NBA season, and his production increased as a result. In his final 55 games of the 2017-18 campaign, Hezonja averaged 12.1 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1.5 three-pointers. For the season, Hezonja finished with career-high marks in points (9.6), rebounds (3.7) and assists (1.4) per game. He shot a career-best 44.2 percent from the field in addition to nailing at least 80.0 percent (81.9) of his free-throws for a third consecutive campaign. Hezonja saw more than 30 minutes on 18 separate occasions, headlined by a 39-minute night in a win over Phoenix on March 24. Hezonja logged at least a pair of steals in every single contest from February 8 to February 28 -- a span of eight consecutive games. Hezonja registered a season-high 28 points against the Pistons on Dec. 17. He eclipsed 20 points five more times, including in a loss to Charlotte on Feb. 14. In that contest, he pulled down 10 rebounds for one of his two double-doubles on the year.

2016

In his second season in the NBA, Hezonja appeared in 65 contests for the Magic. He started just two of those games. Hezonja averaged 4.9 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.0 assist per game. Hezona reached double figures in scoring on nine different occasions. He scored 13 points in two different games, which represented his season high. Hezonja also snatched a season-best 11 rebounds against Detroit on Apr. 12. He registered two steals in seven separate contests. Hezonja's best month was February, when he averaged 6.8 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. For the season, he shot 35.5 percent from the floor and 29.9 percent from beyond the arc.

2015

After being selected fifth overall in the 2015 NBA Draft, Hezonja appeared in 79 games as a rookie in Orlando. The 20-year-old Croatian started nine of those contests and averaged 17.9 minutes per game. He averaged 6.1 points per game on 43.3 percent shooting from the field. Hezonja was particularly lethal from the charity stripe, as he shot 90.7 percent from the line. He scored a season-high 21 points in a start against Chicago on March 2, knocking down 9-of-17 field goal attempts in the process. Hezonja had 20 additional double-figure scoring games. The rookie added 2.2 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. He grabbed a season-high nine rebounds against Atlanta on Feb. 8. Hezonja dished out a season-high seven assists in a win over Milwaukee on April 11. That game against the Bucks was perhaps his most complete outing in his first season, as he added 19 points, five steals and three rebounds.

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Transaction History
  • June 25, 2015
    Drafted by the Orlando Magic in the 1st round (5th pick) of the 2015 NBA Draft.
  • July 10, 2015
    Signed a multi-year rookie contract with the Orlando Magic
  • July 6, 2018
    Signed a one-year contract as a free agent with the New York Knicks.
  • July 3, 2019
    Signed a on-year contract as a free agent with the Portland Trail Blazers.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
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.
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
Erupts for 15 points off bench
FPortland Trail Blazers
July 23, 2020
Hezonja scored a team-high 15 points (5-9 FG, 2-4 3PT, 3-3 FT) in Thursday's scrimmage against the Pacers.
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Sees extra run in blowout win
FPortland Trail Blazers
March 3, 2020
Hezonja posted 10 points (4-6 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 2-2 FT), eight rebounds, four assists and one steal across 28 minutes during Monday's 130-107 win over the Magic.
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Plays 12 minutes in win
FPortland Trail Blazers
February 24, 2020
Hezonja (ankle) played 12 minutes in Sunday's 107-104 win over the Pistons, finishing with zero points and one assist.
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Will attempt to play
FPortland Trail Blazers
Ankle
February 23, 2020
Hezonja (ankle) will attempt to play Sunday against Detroit, Jamie Goldberg of The Oregonian reports.
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Out again Sunday
FPortland Trail Blazers
Ankle
February 22, 2020
Hezonja (ankle) has been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Pistons, Jamie Goldberg of The Oregonian reports.
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