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RJ Barrett

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RJ Barrett

Rowan Alexander “RJ” Barrett Jr. called as RJ Barrett (born June 14, 2000) is a Canadian professional basketball player for the New York Knicks of the National Basketball Association (NBA).


No. 9 – New York Knicks
Position Shooting guard / Small forward
League NBA
Personal information
Born June 14, 2000 (age 21)
Toronto, Ontario
Nationality Canadian
Listed height 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Listed weight 214 lb (97 kg)
Career information
High school ·         St. Marcellinus
(Mississauga, Ontario)·         Montverde Academy
(Montverde, Florida)
College Duke (2018–2019)
NBA draft 2019 / Round: 1 / Pick: 3rd overall
Selected by the New York Knicks
Playing career 2019–present
Career history
2019–present New York Knicks

Early life and career

RJ Barrett was born in Toronto, Ontario, to Kesha Duhaney and former professional basketball player Rowan Barrett. Early in his childhood, he developed an interest in basketball and played with a mini-hoop in his playroom in France, where his father was playing professional basketball at the time. While living in France, Barrett attended a French school but was taught English by his mother. He lived in a number of countries due to his father’s career and shot around after games and practices. Barrett additionally played basketball with players his age through the clubs his father was a part of.

RJ Barrett, under the guidance of his father, emerged as one of the best under-12 players in Ontario. He attended Horizon Jeunesse in Clarkson, Mississauga, leading his school team to a city title for Mississauga French elementary schools, where he was named most valuable player (MVP) despite facing older opponents. Barrett also played for the Regional Elite Development Academy (REDA) under-12 program on the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) circuit, facing many teams from the United States.

By age 15, RJ Barrett was generally playing the point guard position. On August 3, 2014, he scored 37 points and grabbed seven rebounds in a 93–53 win over Quebec at an under-15 provincial tournament. Through grades seven and eight, Barrett attended École Secondaire Jeunes Sans Frontières, a French language school in Brampton.


Personal Life

Barrett’s father Rowan Barrett was born to Jamaican parents and raised in Toronto. He played college basketball for St. John’s before embarking on a professional career spent in Europe and South America. Rowan Sr. was a long-time member of the Canadian national team, which he captained at the 2000 Summer Olympics, and later became executive vice president and general manager of Canada Basketball.

Barrett is the godson of Steve Nash, a Basketball Hall of Fame inductee who played with his father on the Canadian national team. Rowan Sr. first met Nash, who is about two years his junior, while playing for the under-19 national team and quickly became close friends with him. When Barrett was a baby, Nash bought him his first crib.

Barrett’s mother Kesha Duhaney is a native of Brooklyn, New York. She was a nationally ranked sprinter and long jumper for St. John’s University before working for the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. Barrett’s parents first met while attending St. John’s. His maternal aunt Dahlia Duhaney was a member of the Jamaica team 4 × 100 m relay that won a gold medal at the 1991 IAAF World Championships. Also on his mother’s side, his grandparents ran track for the Jamaica national team, and his uncle played football for the University of Maryland.

Barrett can speak French fluently, although he admitted to being “a little rusty” in 2018. He has a brother Nathan, who is about four years younger than him. After Barrett left high school, Nathan joined the prep basketball team at Montverde Academy.


High school career

  • St. Marcellinus (2014–2015)

Barrett began high school at St. Marcellinus Secondary School in Mississauga, whilst competing for the Brampton Warriors AAU team through the REDA. After his 27-point effort for St. Marcellinus against Bill Crothers Secondary School on October 9, 2014, Canadian recruiting website North Pole Hoops labeled him “special” despite only being in his first year.

  • Montverde Academy (2015–2018)

Entering 2016–17, Barrett’s sophomore season for Montverde, he was among 20 players named to the USA Today High School Sports All-USA Preseason Team. In November 2016, he was named to the Naismith Prep Player of the Year Award watch list. In December, Barrett led Montverde to a City of Palms Classic title, scoring a team-best 15 points in the finals against Memphis East High School, and received tournament MVP honors.


College career

Barrett made his preseason debut for Duke on August 15, 2018 in an 86–67 win over the Canadian Ryerson University, scoring 34 points and collecting five rebounds while shooting 11-of-29 from the field.

On December 10, 2018, Barrett earned ACC player and freshman of the week honors for the second time. He had another strong performance in his next game against Yale, where he recorded 30 points, seven rebounds, and six assists.

On March 5, 2019, Barrett scored 28 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 assist in a 71–70 win over Wake Forest. At the end of Duke’s regular season, Barrett was named a member of both the Sporting News’ All-American First Team, ACC All-Freshman team and the All-ACC First Team alongside his teammate Zion Williamson. Barrett was named USA Today’s Player of the Year.

Following Duke’s loss in the 2019 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, Barrett announced his intention to forgo his final three seasons of collegiate eligibility and declare for the 2019 NBA draft.


Professional Career

New York Knicks (2019–present)

On June 20, 2019, the New York Knicks drafted Barrett with the third overall pick in the 2019 NBA draft. On July 3, Barrett officially signed with the Knicks. On October 23, Barrett made his debut in the NBA, starting in a 111–120 loss to the San Antonio Spurs with 21 points, five rebounds, two assists and two steals.

On December 21, 2020, the Knicks announced that they exercised their third-year option on Barrett. On January 21, Barrett scored 28 points, along with five assists and two rebounds, in a 119–104 win over the Golden State Warriors. On March 13, Barrett scored a then career-high 32 points, along with five rebounds and three assists, in a 119–97 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

On October 30, 2021, Barrett put up a career-high 35 points, along with eight rebounds, six assists, and six three-pointers, in a 123–117 win over the New Orleans Pelicans. On November 1, against his hometown Toronto Raptors, he put up a 27 points and 6 rebound performance in a 113–104 loss. On January 6, 2022, Barrett recorded 13 points and six assists and ended the night with a contested game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer, gifting the Knicks a 108–105 victory over the Boston Celtics, on a night where New York trailed by as much as 25.


National Team Career

Barrett was the youngest player on Canada’s under-16 national team that won silver at the 2015 FIBA Americas U16 Championship, in Argentina. Pouring in 14.6 points a contest, he led his team in scoring during the tournament.

In July 2017, Barrett made headlines with a 38-point, 13-rebound, and five-assist showing as he guided Canada’s under-19 squad to a 99–87 semifinal win over the US at the FIBA Under-19 Basketball World Cup. He subsequently led Canada to the title, tallying game-highs of 18 points and 12 rebounds in the championship game against Italy, and was named to the tournament’s All-Star Five and also the tournament Most Valuable Player. Averaging 21.6 points a game, he was also the leading scorer of the tournament.

In June 2018, he made his debut on Canada’s senior men’s national team, scoring 16 points in a 97–62 win over China.


Career highlights and awards

  •  Consensus first-team All-American (2019)
  •  Jerry West Award (2019)
  •  First-team All-ACC (2019)
  •  ACC All-Freshman team (2019)
  •  National high school player of the year (2018)
  •  McDonald’s All-American (2018)
  •  FIBA Under-19 World Cup MVP (2017)

Content available under the (CC BY SA 3.0), via Wikipedia

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