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Washington Wizards general manager Tommy Sheppard spoke glowingly of Rui Hachimura’s rookie NBA season Wednesday, saying the 22-year-old Japanese exceeded expectations.

“We saw growth all season from Rui,” Sheppard said during an online news conference. “Unfortunately, his season was interrupted with an injury (but) when he came he didn’t miss a step. Actually, he jumped back in and was playing very well.” The first Japanese drafted who would go on to play in the NBA, Hachimura averaged 13.5 points, 6.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 48 games.

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