1: James Johnson
This might come as a hot take to some but James Johnson’s minutes should decrease now that the Nets have three new options.
In the 42 games that he’s played in, Johnson is averaging 5.7 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.9 assists, and 19 minutes per game. The forward is shooting 48.8% from the floor.
On Feb. 2 in Sacramento, he scored a season-high 18 points (8-of-11) in 29 minutes. Johnson was one point short of scoring in double-digits on Saturday against the Heat, which would’ve meant that he had scored in double-digits in Brooklyn’s past three games. That’s why this might come as a surprise.
Johnson is currently playing in the Nets’ second unit, although that’ll change when Durant returns. To be honest, Johnson doesn’t deserve to play over Blake Griffin, who will be a better factor on the court at the four with Nic Claxton/Drummond at the five.
In close games down the stretch, Johnson shouldn’t be in the game regardless of who is available to play. He forces passes and throws up shots that he shouldn’t be taking.
Again, Bembry was a better player this season than Johnson. If Brooklyn would’ve waived Johnson over Bembry, it would’ve saved the team more money. Johnson’s making $2.6 million this season and Bembry’s contract was $1.9 million for this year.
With a healthy roster, there wasn’t as big of a need for Johnson but the Nets’ shorthanded roster has complicated things. Hopefully, Johnson’s minutes will go down, and perhaps he’ll be more effective in a limited amount of minutes.
Either way, Nash needs to call on these three players less often.