Chris Johnson ● 6 feet, 11 inches ● 210 pounds ● Center/Power Forward
Chris Johnson has hopped in and out of the NBA over the past few years with solid NBA D-League performances in between. During the 2010-2011 season, when he was named NBA D-League Defensive Player of the Year and earned a spot in the All-Star Game, he averaged 16.2 points, 9.2 rebounds and 2.8 blocks per game for the Dakota Wizards. This past season, he was waived by the Portland Trailblazers after 20 games with the organization before the New Orleans Hornets picked him up.
Prior to playing in the NBA D-League for the 2010-11 season, Johnson played four games for the Boston Celtics before playing basketball in Turkey and Poland that year.
The Washington, D.C. native played for LSU in college, where he averaged 7.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.0 blocks over the course of 88 games.
At 6-foot-11, Johnson is likely to generate NBA interest on his size alone. He pick up a few rebounds and makes it tougher for opponents to drive to the hoop. But his lack of scoring prowess is what’s holding him back from being a truly lethal powerhouse in the paint.
A team could bring Johnson off the bench to preserve their main big guy’s energy. He’s the kind of guy you could put in during a blowout and wouldn’t have to worry about him costing you your lead.
What He Needs from Summer League
Johnson hasn’t shown much productivity in the NBA so first he’s going to need to show the defensive prowess he built a reputation for in the NBA D-League. But to put him in the NBA for good, he’s going to have to work on his scoring inside the paint.
"I think from a defensive standpoint, [he has] an intriguing game. He can be a space-eater. He can really do all the intangibles. That's what he needs to focus on. When people look at players in the NBA, we don't have five set positions. We have what I predict to be nine to 11 positions, and if you can be that guy that can set the screens or a be rebounding guy that can take opportunities to score in the post from high to low -- or be able to pass the ball from high to low, in a team format -- that's important." Ryan Clark, former NBA director of scouting
More on Johnson
31 games from 2010-2012
NBA D-League Experience
1 year (2011-12 with Dakota)
Turkey and Poland
Louisiana State University
Areas of Improvement
Scoring in paint