Live With KJ

He's one of the greatest players to ever don the purple and orange of a Phoenix Suns uniform, and one of the best point guards to ever grace an NBA court.

Kevin Johnson, who was traded to the Suns midway through his rookie year in 1987-88, spent 11-plus seasons in Phoenix. During the first 11 years, the lightening-quick guard averaged 18.8 points and 9.6 assists a night, and led the Suns to three Western Conference Finals appearances, as well as the NBA Finals in 1993.

Following the 1997-98 season, the three-time All-Star announced he was hanging 'em up and retiring at the age of 32. It would not be the last time Suns fans would witness No. 7 flying up and down the court, however, as the passionate playmaker came out of retirement late last season to give his former ballclub one last assist, filling in for an injured Jason Kidd and helping the Suns advance to the second round of the playoffs.

KJ, who has since re-retired and stepped into the broadcast studio as an analyst for the NBA on NBC, will be inducted into the Suns Ring of Honor on Wednesday, March 7, during a special halftime ceremony at America West Arena.

Johnson joins former Suns greats Connie Hawkins, Dick Van Arsdale, Alvan Adams, Paul Westphal, Walter Davis and Tom Chambers in the Ring. And he joined you for a live chat on Suns.com on March 5.




David Udave from [198.60.169.65], at 2:13pm ET
Kevin, how does it feel to have your jersey retired in the Suns Ring of Honor?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:14pm ET
It's an unbelieveable honor to be recognized by a team that I played for 12 seasons in the company of the great players who have also had their jersey retired. It will be a really special night for my family and friends as well.

Kevin Johnson
at 2:15pm ET
And I am most thankful to the Phoenix Suns organization and all of my former teammates.
Bill Neal from [209.179.217.55], at 2:15pm ET
We enjoy watching our favorite point guard on NBC each week. What in the SUNS organization gave you the confidence and polish to appear so poised on national TV?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:17pm ET
Basketball, just the time I was in junior high and in the NBA, has prepared me indirectly for my job as an NBC analyst. When I was in high school, interviewing on radio. When i was in college, I was able to do some public speaking and in the NBA, I was able to do both of those things as well as appear on TV shows, talk shows, have my own TV show, interviews via satellite, keynote speaker, emcee and even appear on a panel in Alabama-Birmin gham to discuss the bombing that killed the four girls in the late sixties. So all those things helped prepare me for my current position.
Manny A. Pasillas from [207.254.39.211], at 2:18pm ET
How often, if at all, do you play basketball?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:18pm ET
I do not play basketball at all now, since we lost last year to Lakers in the second round of the playoffs. While I still love the game, I felt it was best for me to take a clean break from basketball for the next couple years. I don't get bit by the bug.
Kathy B from [207.108.154.116], at 2:19pm ET
How is your St. Hope Academy in Sacramento doing? Are you going to open one here in Phoenix?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:19pm ET
Great question. St. Hope Academy is doing very well. This very moment I'm hoping to get a presence in Phoenix.
matt jenks from [216.192.76.63], at 2:19pm ET
What person inspired you the most to play in the NBA.

Kevin Johnson
at 2:20pm ET
My grandfather inspired me most and his inspiration was directed at me to be the best at whatever I did and that inspiration, when I was playing college basketball, fired me to my NBA days.

Kevin Johnson
at 2:21pm ET
And then while in the NBA, the player I most tried to pattern myself after, both on and off the court was Julius Erving, Dr. J. Not only was he a great basketball player, but he was an even better person off the court. That was my inspiration.
CHRISTIAN from [209.132.103.91], at 2:21pm ET
DO YOU DO ANY MORE WORK AT YOUR OLD HIGH SCHOOL SACRAMENTO HIGH?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:22pm ET
I'm a big supporter of the Sacramento High School as well as their athletic program. In fact, my office in Sacramento and youth center is a short distance away from the high school.
Jeremiah from [207.108.154.116], at 2:22pm ET
If all of the Ring of Honor members played one-on-one, who would win? I'd say you or Connie Hawkins!

Kevin Johnson
at 2:23pm ET
Well, Dick Van Arsdale's too old to win. Both Connie Hawkins and Paul Westphal have bad knees, and Walter Davis. Tom Chambers has put on a little extra weight. So it would be between me and Alvan Adams.
Katie B. from [207.108.154.116], at 2:23pm ET
Who was the most interesting guy you played with?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:24pm ET
The most interesting player I played with, without a doubt would be Charles Barkley. Need I say more? Interesting and colorful.
mpalma5 from [132.254.97.139], at 2:24pm ET
KJ, Im from Mexico... Im a Suns fan and I remember your dunk over Hakeem... but, which one is your best moment in your whole basketball carrer??

Kevin Johnson
at 2:24pm ET
My best individual play was certainly the dunk on Hakeem Olajuwon. I just wish we would have won that game.
Ralph Chiappetta from [204.155.160.25], at 2:25pm ET
How instrumental was Cotton Fitzsimmons in your playing career?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:25pm ET
To be successful, we all need someone to believe in us. Cotton Fitzsimmons, more than anyone, believed in me and what I could do with the Phoenix Suns. I attribute my NBA success to Cotton Fitzsimmons.
ryan markley from [165.139.243.247], at 2:26pm ET
How was it on the court when you played compared to now?


Kevin Johnson
at 2:28pm ET
When I first came into the league in the late 80s, the game was a lot more wide open and fast paced. Scoring was paramount and maybe the major reason for that was Showtime. Now there's much more of an emphasis on defense, there's a much slower pace of basketball, which I don't think is as exciting. The fine line is trying to find that perfect balance between scoring and defense.
Rickard from [209.47.92.200], at 2:28pm ET
Who's the best *pure* point guard in the east right now?
Are Williams & Childs in Toronto emerging as a new tandem to watch out for?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:28pm ET
The best pure point guard in the league is Jason Kidd.
Connie Farrington from [206.213.40.100], at 2:29pm ET
Would you ever consider coaching basketball?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:29pm ET
The only type of coach I could see myself being is coaching kids.
Joel from Mesa from [64.12.104.184], at 2:29pm ET
People foeget you led DreamTeamII in assists. Who did you learn from the most in that experience?

Kevin Johnson
at 2:30pm ET
It was really just a great honor to represent our country. Being able to wear red, white and blue with other great players in the NBA, I'll always cherish.
dmax from [192.62.99.160], at 2:30pm ET
What is the challenge for you as a commentator?


Kevin Johnson
at 2:31pm ET
To make sure Ahmad Rashad doesn't lose his place when he's reading the teleprompter.

Kevin Johnson
at 2:32pm ET
I'd like to thank all the fans for their support over the years.

All-Stars on Nash

Various NBA All-Stars including Blake Griffin and Kevin Love discuss the play of the 38-year-old Steve Nash

Stars Discuss Markieff Morris

Colleagues discuss the solid play of Suns rookie Markieff Morris during All-Star Weekend in Orlando

Young Guards on Nash

Guards including Derrick Rose and Deron Williams discuss the play of Suns playmaker Steve Nash.

Markieff Morris Talks Rising Stars

Suns rookie Markieff Morris discusses his experience playing in the Rising Skills Challenge on Friday night