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Moody earns ring as an NBA rookie

by Bob Holt | June 18, 2022 at 1:58 a.m.
Golden State Warriors guard Moses Moody celebrates after scoring, next to Dallas Mavericks guard Spencer Dinwiddie (26) during the first half in Game 5 of the NBA basketball playoffs Western Conference finals in San Francisco, Thursday, May 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

FAYETTEVILLE -- For the second year in a row, a Little Rock native who played at the University of Arkansas is an NBA champion.

This season it's Moses Moody with the Golden State Warriors. Last season it was Bobby Portis with the Milwaukee Bucks.

Portis, a 6-10 forward and former Little Rock Hall star who was the SEC Player of the Year in 2015, had to wait until his sixth NBA season to win a championship with the Bucks -- his fourth pro team after stints with the Chicago Bulls, Washington Wizards and New York Knicks. He was the No. 22 overall pick in the 2015 draft by the Bulls.

Moody, who played at Little Rock Parkview, North Little Rock and Monteverde (Fla.) Academy, won an NBA championship as a rookie after the Warriors clinched the title with Thursday night's victory over the Boston Celtics.

The Warriors made Moody the No. 14 overall pick in last year's draft. He entered the draft after being the SEC Freshman of the Year and an all-conference first-team selection.

"I just want to give a big shoutout and congratulations to Moses Moody and the Golden State Warriors on winning a championship," Arkansas Coach Eric Musselman said Friday. "Not many [rookies] get the opportunity to get playing time on a championship team and then also be a part of playing with incredible veterans."

Musselman is a former NBA head coach with Golden State and Sacramento.

"Really cool to watch his rookie year," Musselman said of Moody. "And then see how it ended."

Moody, a 6-6 guard who had established NBA stars as teammates with Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson, played in 52 regular-season games with 11 starts. He scored 10 or more points in eight games, including 30 against Denver and 18 against Memphis. He averaged 4.4 points, 1.5 rebounds and 11.7 minutes per game. He shot 43.7% from the field (80 of 183), including 36.8% on three-pointers (40 of 110), and 77.8% on free throws (28 of 36).

Moody, who turned 20 on May 31, played in 13 playoff games and averaged 3.2 points in 8.0 minutes. He shot 53.6% (15 of 28) from the field.

"He's a keeper," Warriors Coach Steve Kerr said of Moody in March. "He's a guy who's going to be a cornerstone for this team for a long time to come. It's easy to see that right now in his rookie year."

Print Headline: Moody earns ring as an NBA rookie


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