Austin Toros forward and native San Antonian Eric Dawson was named the D-League’s Impact Player of the Year.
It’s been a long road to reach this kind of recognition for Dawson. A D-League veteran who has been with the Toros since 2007, Dawson got some exposure at the D-League Showcase last season, getting the attention of South Korean club KCC Eggis, who signed him for the remainder of the season.
The Sam Houston graduate who played through a pair of 10-day contracts with the San Antonio Spurs this season, had a career year with the Toros, who are now in the conference finals of the D-League playoffs.
“Eric hit the ground running and immediately had a significant impact in Austin after he re-joined the Toros,” said Chris Alpert, Vice President of Basketball Operations and Player Personnel for the NBA D-League. “His role didn’t go unnoticed on the NBA stage as he received two GATORADE Call-ups. I’m thrilled to congratulate Eric on another impactful season in Austin.”
Dawson averaged 17.2 points, 10.7 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game for a stacked Toros team this season. He was all set to go to Slovenia in January when he signed a contract with Union Olimpija, but Dawson was a no-show, which ended up being a good decision considering he was called up to the Spurs in February and in March.
Dawson came up big in the series-winning game against the Erie Bayhawks in the first round of the playoffs, poring in 23 points to go along with 16 rebounds and two blocks.
The Toros play Game 2 of their series with the Canton Charge on Saturday at home in the Cedar Park Center. After seeing Leo Lyons and Squeaky Johnson spend some time in the NBA, and with Lance Thomas finishing out the season with the New Orleans Hornets, it could be a good opportunity to see several players, including Dawson, that could get signed to playoff rosters or get another chance at the NBA next season.