Blog Entry

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

Posted on: June 28, 2010 3:05 pm
Edited on: June 28, 2010 6:02 pm
Look, I'm not sayin'. I'm just sayin'.

You're going to be hard pressed to find a bigger Joe Johnson advocate in ye old Blogosphere than the author of this post right here. An Arkansas native (Johnson grew up in Little Rock, went to school at U of A), and someone that dug the SSOL-era Suns (who didn't outside of San Antonio), I have followed the explosive wing's career in Atlanta with great interest. That little crossover business with Boston? That's some pretty stuff, right there.

But is he worth all the attention he's suddenly receiving?

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports is reporting that the Mavs intend to pursue a sign-and-trade to acquire the services of the soon-to-be 29 year-old shooting guard. This coming on the heels of reports that he's on the fast train to New York, and of course, that Chicago is on the target list as well.

The Mavericks have been banking on a sign-and-trade option for free agency for a long time (and Mark Cuban's already invested money to that effect in the form of a fine for talking about it ). They have a talented roster and are willing to absorb more salary, as they've consistently been at the top of the luxury tax for nearly the past decade. A combination of Caron Butler and pieces might be enough to entice the Hawks into going for the deal. For Johnson, it would mean getting the extra year's worth of money that comes with signing with his former club, plus not having to be "the man" for the team, playing in tandem with Dirk Nowitzki. It would also move him closer to his hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas.

But is Johnson worth the kind of money that would be coming to him in a max-contract sign and trade? There's been a lot of speculation about Johnson being willing to take less than a max deal, but those rumors were tied with him being headed to New York. Regardless, his deal will still be an albatross, and will remain so throughout the length of his contract. By the time it ends, Johnson could be a 35 year old shooting guard with faded elevation. His jump shot isn't pure like Ray Allen, and there's been a noticeable plateau in his efficiency as he approaches the apex of his career.

With that being said, there's something to be said in that article linked above from Hawks blog Hoopinion on how his game could adjust in the right circumstances:

"...he could become more efficient in a lower-usage role but likely at the cost of some the volume of points he's scored and assists he's earned over the last five seasons."

That's precisely the type of role he'd fit in with the Mavs. Jason Kidd as the creator, Dirk Nowitzki (assuming the highly probable re-signing) as the lynch pin, and Johnson as the perimeter finisher. It would put the Mavs offense immediately in the top of the league offensively... hypothetically. Then again, the deal for Caron Butler and Brendan Haywood was supposed to put them in similar context, and instead resulted in a swift first round ejection.

There's one thing we can tell from this report. Mark Cuban, yet again, will not be sitting around twiddling his thumbs during the most important offseason in NBA history.

-Matt Moore


Since: Jan 7, 2009
Posted on: June 29, 2010 4:07 pm

Ball Hog Wanted?

Not by this NY Knick fan. Did ANYONE else watch the Hawks flame out in the playoffs? Why do you think that happened? Two words: Joe + Johnson. He's a ball hog; worse than King James. Brings the ball up and keeps it for the entire 24 before forcing up some askward heave. If the NYK sign him, believe me, they are truly doomed to remain cellar-dwellers for the length of his contract. Unlike Alan Houston, Johnson is supposed to be a point guard, not the shooting two guard. So, unless he is stripped of the point role, whoever picks him up should be very wary that their point guard won't be dishin' as much as he'll be lookin' to go swishin'. Oh, and this doesn't even address his defensive issues, which are many. I hope Lebron stays in Cleveland and they pick up Johnson, that will ensure either the Lakers or the upstart OKC next year's NBA crown!!!

Since: Jun 21, 2010
Posted on: June 29, 2010 3:58 pm

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

I  watched a number of Hawks games this past season & pretty much saw the same thing every time--they ran their offense for 3 quarters and were very efficient,then when the game tightened up they ran their offense through Joe--at which point their offense went stagnant. Joe is a nice player,gets his share of assists and even rebounds,but he's NOT a go-to guy! Once you allow a defense to focus on him he's a very average player-certainly not a max contract guy as far as I'm concerned,but if somebody wants to pay more power to him...

Since: Jun 29, 2010
Posted on: June 29, 2010 1:51 pm

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

Joe Johnson is one of the most overated players in the nba. He doesn't play within the team or defense. The hawks will be a better team without him. I've been to plenty of hawks games with everyone around me screaming for him to pass the ball, but nope - instead dude wants to isolate for one on one so he can miss the shot.  You know it's bad when the game commentators are saying that he should pass the ball. I hope the hawks don't re-sign him.

Since: Nov 2, 2008
Posted on: June 29, 2010 12:28 pm

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

The bad thing is JJ and Boozer probably end up on the Knicks with max contracts when they realize they cant get Lebron and Bosh...

Since: Sep 20, 2008
Posted on: June 29, 2010 11:24 am

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

I disagree with the notion that there are only 3 players worthy of a max deal, this off season.. I think more deserve a max deal.. Wade, Lebron, Bosh, Amare Stoudamire, Dirk, Boozer, and only in an up tempo style(like New York), Joe Johnson... Boozer is one of the better power forward out there. He shoots a high percentage from the field, rebounds, has a jumpshot, and runs the floor.. He isn't a defensive presence, but he is worth a max deal.. He does get hurt, but injuries can happen to anyone. When he plays, he perfoms and performs well..

Amare Stoudamire is a beast and will be great, even without Steve Nash.. If Bosh goes to be with Lebron & Wade in Miami, then I can see Stoudamire and Joe Johnson forming a great duo in New York

Since: Oct 7, 2009
Posted on: June 29, 2010 10:25 am

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

Chris Bosh? easily the 3rd best player available, and not to mention younger then dirk and amare.

Since: Nov 6, 2006
Posted on: June 29, 2010 9:22 am

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

Allen Houston was a pretty damn good shooter.

Since: May 26, 2009
Posted on: June 29, 2010 9:11 am

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

Well then, it's not a total loss for Atlanta if they can squeeze Jamal Crawford into the starting lineup. The starting lineup might look like this: Bibby at PG, Crawford at SG, Butler at SF, Josh Smith at PF, and Horford at C. Or maybe the coach can convince Josh Smith to come off the bench while Haywood starts at center and Horford slides over to power forward. Smith could be an excellent "spark plug" off the bench if he could mature a little bit and understand his role. Either way Atlanta would still end up with a roster that should compete for a playoff spot. That starting 5 is very close in talent level to what Chicago used most of last year.

Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: June 29, 2010 1:14 am

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

Hey Overboard. 

I like what you are saying, but the reality is the trade has nothing to do with getting equal talent back.  The Hawks can't afford to pay Johnson what he wants (max).  If they offer him less, they risk him just walking away from their deal and not getting anything in return.  They absolutely cannot let that happen.

Like it or not, Joe Johnson will not be a Hawk next year.  We had a chance if there was little interest, but not now.  He will demand max, and the Hawks will have to take the best offer.  I just hope the Hawks get something worthwhile.  I am completely in agreement that Butler and Haywood are not what the Hawks need at all.

Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: June 29, 2010 1:09 am

Everyone wants Joe Johnson all of a sudden

I am not going to say that Joe Johnson is a max contract guy, but to compare him to Houston is not really close.

Houston did nothing to get his team involved and the only defense he ever sniffed was when he was defending his inability to pass at press conferences.  Here are some career numbers:

APG - JJ 4.5, AH 2.4
RPG - JJ 4.2, AH 2.9
SPG - JJ 1.0, AH 0.7

Johnson also frequently d's up against the better 2g/SF's because eh is a better on the ball defender than Josh Smith and also because Smith is a beast when allowed to give help.

Now, these numbers may not look significant, but I can tell you right now that no NBA exec in his right mind would even consider signing Houston to the same deal as Johnson.  He may not be max worthy, but the comparison is just not a good one.

I an a Hawks fan and I want us to sign and trade Joe, but only if we get great value, and only because Jamal Crawford could fill in reasonably well from the points perspective.  Some pundits believe if the hawks retain Johnson they will improve in the East by default due to Cleveland possibly losing LeBron andBoston aging, but I don't agree.  For one, Orlando isn't going anywhere.  For another the Celtics have enough young talent to give the old guys even more rest next year.  LeBron looks to be staying in the East, and might be on an even better team.  Lastly, Milwaukee is coming on fast.  The Hawks can't win with the current crop, as they just don't have teat ultra clutch player or group.  Johnson can't do it himself.  The Hawks would be better off moving Johnson and seeing if the youngsters would flourish without Iso-Joe always happening.  they may stink, but I don't see them going much further than they already have. 

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or