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‘Yogimania’ has ex-Hoosier Yogi Ferrell on NBA fast track

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Sunday, February 05, 2017 07:50 am
Yogi Ferrell is about to be rich. NBA rich.

OK, this isn’t the same as LeBron James’ mega-money world, but given the former Indiana standout is an undrafted free agent who has spent most of this season in the D-League, it’s a huge jump.

How big a jump?

About $1.3 million over two years.

All Ferrell has done since joining the Dallas Mavericks on Jan. 28 is average 17.8 points and 5.0 assists while shooting 52 percent from three-point range.

He was awesome in a Friday night over Portland with 32 points, so much so that “Yogimania” has rocked the league, just like “Linsanity” did (remember Jeremy Lin’s spectacular debut?) a few years ago.

Even better, the Mavericks are 4-0 since Ferrell showed up, including wins over two of the NBA's best teams, San Antonio and Cleveland. While they’re still just 20-30, they’re at least back in the Western Conference playoff conversation.

Consider what Ferrell has done in these four games:

Against a really good San Antonio team, he had nine points, seven assists and two steals in a road victory.

Against Cleveland, and going against All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, he had 19 points, five rebounds and four steals in another win.

Then he had 11 points and five assists in a win over Philadelphia.

Finally, he was a superstar, at least for one game, against Portland. He was 9-for-11 from three-point range. That tied a team rookie three-point record set by Roderick Beaubois in 2010 against Golden State.

As a result, Ferrell is reportedly set to sign a two-year minimum league contract on Tuesday, once his 10-day contract expires. That's a bit more than $500,000 this season and more than $800,000 next year.

As owner, and former IU grad, Mark Cuban, told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, “Yogi has been amazing. We think he can help the Mavs for years to come.”

Ferrell paid his dues after an outstanding four-year career with the Hoosiers that included scoring nearly 2,000 points and setting the school assist record. Before the draft, he had 16 workouts with NBA teams, and has said he thought 10 of them were “outstanding,” but wasn’t drafted. Perhaps his 6-foot height was a problem, although there are other, and smaller guards in the league.

Anyway, he considered multiple free-agent offers before signing with the Brooklyn Nets. He participated in their summer league team, and then training camp, before being cut. 

He played 10 games with the Nets, but spent most of his time with the Long Island Nets of the D-League. For a while, he was thinking of heading overseas to play before Dallas called him in late January.

Now his patience and hard work is about to pay off.

In other words, “Yogimania” rocks.


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