Suns introduce newest member Wesley Johnson
Originally published: Jul 31, 2012 - 1:58 pm
The newest member of the Phoenix Suns, Wesley Johnson, was formally introduced in a press conference held at US Airways Center Tuesday.
"I'm more than excited to be here," said Johnson, "there was a whirlwind going around with the rumors and everything. When it finally came about that I was a Phoenix Sun it put a huge smile on my face."
Johnson, a 6-foot-7, 215-pound forward, came to the Suns via a three-way trade between Phoenix, New Orleans and Minnesota; a trade that resulted in the team parting ways with center Robin Lopez and forward Hakim Warrick. The Suns also received a protected 2013 first round pick from the Timberwolves in the deal.
"We were getting a lot of calls from agents about our wing position," said Suns General Manager Lance Blanks, "thankfully that will cease with this transaction, as [Johnson] will sure up that that position."
Of all the attributes that Johnson possesses, athleticism and 7-foot-1 wingspan included, his versatility to play either the shooting guard or the small forward position at any given time is what the team is most excited about.
"This is a multi-position roster," said Blanks. "[Johnson] fits right into the wheelhouse of that. With his length he can cause some problems for the twos. And for the threes, he can go right around those guys."
In his two years with the Timberwolves, the former No. 4 overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, Johnson has averaged 7.7 points, 2.9 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game.
While Johnson saw his numbers regress last season, the Suns are convinced that Johnson, who played as a big during his high school career, is continuing to grow within his new outside position on the court.
"He is a young perimeter player," said Blanks, "he's still learning a position on the perimeter. We'll provide an environment where he can continue to grow here in Phoenix.
Wesley Johnson will be reuniting with two former teammates here in the Valley, as both Michael Beasley and Sebastian Telfair were teammates of his in Minnesota during his time with the team. Johnson is weeks removed from a great performance in the Summer League. The former Syracuse standout averaged 20.5 points while shooting 48.3 percent from the field and 45 percent from the three-point line during the summer. Johnson will wear number two with the Suns.
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