Damyean Dotson has flown under the radar during his career, but he could be developing into a reliable role player for the New York Knicks.
It’s been quite the doozy of a career for New York Knicks guard Damyean Dotson. He played his first two years of college ball at Oregon, averaging 10.4 points per game, shooting 43.9 percent from the field, and around 32 percent from three. But, following sexual assault allegations, Dotson and two teammates were dismissed from the university.
Although never charged, Dotson then enrolled at Houston Community College for a short time before transferring to the University of Houston for his junior and senior seasons.
His senior season specifically, Dotson took another step forward. He averaged 17.4 points and 6.9 rebounds per game on 47 percent shooting from the field and 44 percent from behind the arc. It was a campaign impressive enough for the Knicks to take him 44th overall in the 2017 NBA draft.
Playing well enough in training camp to remain on the team, Dotson’s rookie season was awkward. He was dominant in his games with the Westchester Knicks (18.2 ppg, 48/38/76 shooting splits) but couldn’t seem to find a role in the big leagues.
Of course, it also didn’t help that former head coach Jeff Hornacek was content sitting him on the bench (10.8 minutes per game) while Tim Hardaway Jr. was taking up 32 minutes each night. Yet, Dotson was still able to put up an extremely impressive performance on one of the final nights of the 2017-18 season.
This three-minute clip shows a little bit of everything from Dotson. He catches defenders out of position, allowing him an open three, he breaks down defenders off the dribble, hits tough mid-range jumpers, and moves spectacularly off the ball, converting on back cuts and filling the lane on fast breaks. On the defensive side of the ball, he showed active hands in limited opportunities.
Dotson is coming off a very successful sophomore season. Head coach David Fizdale provided Dotson with consistent minutes for most of the season.
He’s proving that he’s a capable on-ball defender and a solid threat from deep. With one game left to play, Dotson is averaging 10.8 points per game on 37 percent shooting from deep.
Assuming the Knicks use their two max slots this offseason on all-star and/or superstar level players, they are going to have plenty of ball-dominant players. The max slot occupiers, Dennis Smith Jr., Kevin Knox, Allonzo Trier, and whoever they draft with their lottery pick will all want the ball. Even that is too many guys. It’s likely that Trier will have to take on a smaller role.
Regardless, guys like Mitchell Robinson and Damyean Dotson will be essential. Guys who don’t always need to put the ball on the floor in order to impact the game. And with role players earning more and more money each offseason, it’s going to be tough to find them in free agency. So if Dotson is able to come off the bench, run off screens, or just spot up in the corner for needed three-pointers and some defense, his value will skyrocket.