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Semaj Rakim Christon (born November 1, 1992) is an American professional basketball player for Limoges CSP of the French LNB Pro A. He played college basketball for Xavier.

Semaj Christon
No. 6 – Limoges CSP
PositionPoint guard
LeagueLNB Pro A
EuroCup
Personal information
Born (1992-11-01) November 1, 1992 (age 26)
Cincinnati, Ohio
NationalityAmerican
Listed height6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Listed weight190 lb (86 kg)
Career information
High school
CollegeXavier (2012–2014)
NBA draft2014 / Round: 2 / Pick: 55th overall
Selected by the Miami Heat
Playing career2014–present
Career history
2014–2015Oklahoma City Blue
2015–2016Consultinvest Pesaro
2016–2017Oklahoma City Thunder
2017→Oklahoma City Blue
2017–2018Guangzhou Long-Lions
2018Santeros de Aguada
2018–2019Hapoel Be'er Sheva
2019–presentLimoges CSP
Career highlights and awards

High school careerEdit

The Cincinnati, Ohio native attended Winton Woods High School with whom he led the Fort Ancient Valley Conference in scoring as a senior with 21 points per game, adding 5.2 assists. He was a District 16 Player of the Year, Fort Ancient Valley Conference West Division Player of the Year, Cincinnati Enquirer All-Star, All-Southwest District Second-Team selection,[1] and Honorable Mention All-State.[2][3]

In July 2011, Christon committed to Xavier, playing in the Atlantic 10 Conference of the NCAA Division I, but would join the team in 2012, first attending prep school Brewster Academy along with fellow recruit Jalen Reynolds.[3] Christon, rated a four star recruit by Rivals.com,[4] chose Cincinnati college Xavier over reported offers from Illinois, Providence and Georgetown.[5]

At Brewster, he was part of a star-studded lineup that included future NBA players JaKarr Sampson, T. J. Warren and Mitch McGary, serving as the floor general and assist-provider as the school romped to a 32-1 record and a National Prep School Championship,[6][7] with Christon earning All-NESPAC First Team honours.[4][8]

During his high school career, Christon also played AAU basketball for Club Ohio, participating in the Under-17 National Championship,[9] and later on for the Cincinnati Knights.[10]

College careerEdit

2012–13 seasonEdit

Christon joined Xavier for the 2012–13 season. After missing the first game of the season due to a cut in his elbow getting infected,[11] he made his Musketeer debut against Butler on 13 November 2012, contributing 2 points and 8 assists.[12] His game soon picked up as he had an average of 17.7 points and 5 assists over the next 7 games, finishing the season as Xavier's leader in points (15.2), assists (4.6), steals (1.5) and minutes (34.3),[6] with his 456 total points ranking second among Xavier freshmen through history.[13] His performances earned him personal recognition, he was Rookie of the Year, All-Rookie team and All-Conference Second Team in the Atlantic 10,[14] adding a Kyle Macy Freshmen All-America Team selection by Collegeinsider.com and NABC District 4 Second Team.[15]

2013–14 seasonEdit

Xavier's realignment to the Big East Conference did not deter Christon in 2013-14,[16] on the contrary he improved his scoring average to a mark of 17 points per game, good for 4th in the conference, along with 4.1 assists (sixth best) and 1.4 steals, all on the way to a unanimous All-Big East First Team selection.[17] Entering the Big East Tournament with 984 career points, Christon had 18 points in the quarterfinal win against Marquette - a team against which he priorly had scored a career-high 28 points - to become second Musketeer after Byron Larkin to reach 1,000 points as a sophomore.[18] Another 18 points in the semifinal defeat to Creighton led to a Big East All-Tournament Team selection.[19] In the NCAA Tournament First Four encounter with NC State, Christon was overshadowed by former teammate T. J. Warren, posting 14 points with 7 turnovers against the former's 25 points as NC State won the game, that would prove to be the last of his college career.[20]

In March 2014, Christon declared himself as an early entrant for the NBA draft, forgoing his two remaining years of college eligibility. Despite speculation that he would withdraw his entry, Christon hired an agent and submitted the paperwork in April 2014, thereby ensuring he wouldn't return to Xavier for his junior season.[21]

Christon finished his collegiate career with 1,034 points in 64 games (16.2 average), adding 281 assists (4.4), he led the Musketeers in scoring and steals during both of the seasons he played and in assists during his freshman season.[22]

Professional careerEdit

D-League and Summer League (2014–2015)Edit

Projected to be drafted anywhere between the late first round and late second round,[21] Christon was selected by the Miami Heat with the 55th overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft on June 26. His draft rights were later traded to the Charlotte Hornets,[23] and then again to the Oklahoma City Thunder.[24] He joined the Thunder for the 2014 NBA Summer League where he experienced his first taste of professional basketball.[25]

Christon did not take part in the Thunder's training camp and was instead incorporated into the team's NBA Development League affiliate, the Oklahoma City Blue.[26][27] In his first professional game, on November 14, 2014 against the Maine Red Claws, he scored 32 points.[28] His good form continued during the season and led him to participate in the D-League All-Star Game in February 2015, contributing 10 points for the Prospects.[29][30] Christon finished the 2014–15 season with 18.6 points, 3.7 rebounds, 5.7 assists (ninth best in the league), 1.6 steals (13th) in around 35 minutes per game over 44 games played, earning NBA Development League All-Rookie Third Team honours.[31]

In July 2015, Christon re-joined the Thunder for the 2015 NBA Summer League.[32] He performed well at the Orlando event, top-scoring in the fifth place game win over the Los Angeles Clippers with 23, for tournament averages of 15.6 and an unrivaled 6.8 assists.[33] Despite these performances and plaudits from Thunder assistant coach Darko Rajakovic, a contract was not forthcoming, with some speculating that the Thunder – having just signed Cameron Payne at his position – would wait for backup point guard D. J. Augustin's contract to expire in 2016 before signing Christon.[34]

Consultinvest Pesaro (2015–2016)Edit

Later that summer, Christon moved to the Italian Serie A, signing with Consultinvest Pesaro on August 3, 2015.[35] In 30 games, he averaged 14.3 points, 3.7 assists, 3.3 rebounds and 1.6 steals in 33.2 minutes per game.[36]

Oklahoma City Thunder (2016–2017)Edit

In July 2016, Christon re-joined the Oklahoma City Thunder for the 2016 NBA Summer League.[37] On August 20, 2016, he officially signed with the Thunder for the first time.[36] On October 26, 2016, he made his NBA debut in a 103–97 win over the Philadelphia 76ers, recording four points, four assists and one rebound in 15 minutes off the bench.[38] On January 2, 2017, he scored a season-high 11 points in a 98–94 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.[39] During his rookie season, he received multiple assignments to the Oklahoma City Blue, the Thunder's D-League affiliate.[40]

On October 14, 2017, Christon was waived by the Thunder as one of the team’s final preseason roster cuts ahead of the 2017–18 season.[41]

China, Summer League and Puerto Rico (2017–2018)Edit

On December 2, 2017, Christon signed with the Chinese team Guangzhou Long-Lions.[42] On December 24, 2017, Christon recorded a career-high 45 points, shooting 16-of-31 from the field, along with five rebounds and seven assists in a 118–114 win over the Shanghai Sharks.[43]

On July 6, 2018, Christon joined the Brooklyn Nets for the 2018 NBA Summer League.[44]

On July 31, 2018, Christon signed with the Puerto Rican team Santeros de Aguada for the rest of the 2018 BSN season.[45]

Hapoel Be'er Sheva (2018–2019)Edit

On September 19, 2018, Christon signed with the Israeli team Hapoel Be'er Sheva for the 2018–19 season.[46] In October 2018, Christon led Be'er Sheva to the 2018 Israeli Basketball League Cup Final, where they eventually lost to Maccabi Rishon LeZion. On November 24, 2018, Christon recorded a season-high 31 points, shooting 5-of-11 from three-point range, along with three rebounds and four assists in an 88–89 loss to Hapoel Jerusalem.[47]

Limoges CSP (2019–present)Edit

On July 24, 2019, Christon signed a one-year deal with the French team Limoges CSP.[48][49]

National team careerEdit

On November 14, 2017, Christon was named a member of the United States national team for the 2019 FIBA World Cup qualification. Christon led the team to a 2-0 record during the November first-round games, played in both games, averaged 13.5 minutes, 6.5 points, 1.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game, shot 44.4 percent from the field, 100 percent (2-2 3pt FGs) percent from 3-point and 100 percent from the foul line (3-3 FTs). [50]

Career statisticsEdit

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high

Regular seasonEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2016–17 Oklahoma City 64 1 15.2 .345 .190 .548 1.4 2.0 .4 .1 2.9
Career 64 1 15.2 .345 .190 .548 1.4 2.0 .4 .1 2.9

PlayoffsEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2017 Oklahoma City 2 0 10.5 .400 .333 .000 1.5 2.5 .5 .0 2.5
Career 2 0 10.5 .400 .333 .000 1.5 2.5 .5 .0 2.5

Domestic LeaguesEdit

Year Team League GP MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2014–15   Oklahoma City Blue D-League 46 35.2 .448 .259 .778 3.6 5.8 1.6 .2 18.8
2016–17   Consultinvest Pesaro LBA 30 33.2 .469 .190 .664 3.3 3.7 1.6 .2 14.3
2017–18   Guangzhou Long-Lions CBA 16 42.9 .474 .230 .835 4.3 5.7 1.8 .3 27.7
2018   Santeros de Aguada BSN 3 33.5 .500 .389 .812 2.0 4.3 2.0 1.0 18.6
2018–19   Hapoel Be'er Sheva IBPL 8 28.6 .442 .395 .786 2.1 4.0 1.6 .1 18.7

Source: RealGM

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Four area players named to SW district first team". SpringfieldNewsSun.com. March 4, 2011. Archived from the original on September 24, 2015. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  2. ^ "2011" Boys Basketball All-Ohio Teams". OHSAA.org. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Men's Basketball announces the signing of four high school standouts". GoXavier.com. November 9, 2011. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Semaj Christon Recruiting Profile". Rivals.com. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  5. ^ Snow, Brian (July 25, 2011). "Christon comes off the board". Scout.com. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  6. ^ a b Jefferson, Brandon (November 14, 2013). "Semaj Christon is the best college basketball player you don't know about". Uproxx.com. Dime Magazine. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  7. ^ Broering, Rick (April 3, 2012). "Christon looking forward to Friday". Scout.com. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  8. ^ "NEPSAC Class AAA Announces Seasonal Honors". BrewsterAcademy.org. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
  9. ^ Kelley, TJ (July 29, 2010). "16u/17u Super Showcase; 16u Nat. Championship". Scout.com. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  10. ^ Phillips, Scott (July 24, 2011). "St. Louis Summer Classic: Day 2". Scout.com. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  11. ^ De Courcy, Mike (November 9, 2012). "Depleted Xavier loses Semaj Christon to infection". SportingNews.com. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  12. ^ "Xavier Records Impressive 62-47 Win Over Butler". GoXavier.com. November 13, 2012. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  13. ^ "Semaj Christon Bio". GoXavier.com. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  14. ^ "Xavier's Christon and Taylor each win multiple Atlantic 10 Conference postseason honors". FoxSports.com. March 12, 2013. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  15. ^ "Xavier's Semaj Christon Earns Freshman All-America Honor". GoXavier.com. April 1, 2013. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
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  17. ^ Russell, Shannon (March 9, 2014). "Semaj Christon unanimous Big East first team pick". Cincinnati.com. The Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
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  25. ^ Gallo, Nick (July 10, 2014). "Thunder Rookies Making Progress in Summer League". NBA.com. Retrieved August 3, 2015.
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  45. ^ "Cambio en Santeros de Aguada llega Semaj Christon por Justin Keenan". canchalatina.com (in Spanish). July 31, 2018. Retrieved September 19, 2018.
  46. ^ "Hapoel Be'er Sheva signs Semaj Christon". Sportando.basketball. September 20, 2018. Retrieved September 20, 2018.
  47. ^ "Winner League, Game 8: Be'er Sheva Vs Hapoel J-M". basket.co.il. November 24, 2018. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  48. ^ "Limoges picks up point guard Christon". eurocupbasketball.com. July 24, 2019. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
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External linksEdit