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Q & A with future Wildcat hooper, Ray Smith

Get to know the dynamic incoming freshman forward

Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

Ray Smith is one of the highly-touted players in Arizona's loaded 2015 recruiting class. ranked Smith as the 12th best prospect in his in class.

"Ray is a terrific athlete who can really get up and down the floor. He has the size you want as a small forward, and he can really pass, shoot and dribble. He’s a very skilled basketball player with great size," Sean Miller said about the dynamic forward (via Arizona Athletics).

With the departure of Stanley Johnson and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson to the NBA, he should have a major role on this year's team.

As a junior, Smith averaged 24.7 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game and was named to Nevada's first-team all-state. Unfortunately, an ACL tear would force him to miss his senior season.

I know Wildcat fans are interested to see how his recovery is going, so we asked him that and some other questions. Here they are:

Q: Obviously the main thing Arizona fans have been wondering: How’s your recovery coming along? How close are you to being 100%?

Ray Smith:  My leg is fine. I'm able to do all things that I could do before, and I've also took the time to gain 20 lbs. I'm not a big percentage guy, but I would say I'm about 100%.

Q: How has being sidelined with an injury changed how you see the game?

RS: Being on the sideline just showed me really how to get easy buckets without having to do a lot, like cutting.

Q: You had a number of schools recruiting you, but obviously you chose Arizona. What were the main things about the program that impacted your decision?

RS: Damon Stoudamire is a big reason I came to the University of Arizona. He was there with me before I blew up, and I just have a lot of trust in him that he will get me right.

Q: What are some things you do best on the court, and what are some areas you would like to improve on?

RS: I feel like I can improve in all ways, and I also feel that I do everything well. It's just a matter of sharpening all parts of my game up.

Q: Which player(s) do you model your game after?

RS: Paul George, Melo, and Kobe are the new guys that I am studying right now.

Q: What do you expect your role to be on this year’s team?

RS: Be a leader and work hard! Play great basketball.

Q: What has been your most memorable moment in your basketball career so far?

RS: That I have never lost a rivalry game in my basketball career.

Q: Other than basketball, what’s one of your other favorite hobbies?

RS: I just love hanging with family more than anything.

Q: Rondae’s "shimmy" before each free throw routine became quite a thing here at Arizona, do you have a unique free throw ritual or routine that could take its place?

RS: Nothing crazy. Just two dribbles, breathe, spin, and let it go.

Q: What’s one thing you want Arizona fans to know about you?

RS: Man, I just want to hoop, and if you see me say wassup!


If you want some visual proof that his knee's doing well, here you go: