James Johnson Finds Position with Kings
This was going to be a big season for James Johnson – a new team with an opportunity to play a big role.
When the Kings acquired Johnson in the offseason, the hope was that he would be the starting small forward, filling a glaring need.
Smart now uses Johnson (6-foot-9, 248 pounds) more often as a power forward, which the coach believes simplifies the game for Johnson. As a power forward, Johnson doesn’t have to be a playmaker or score as often, and Smart said Johnson has the size and strength to defend power forwards and centers at times.
“I know sometimes when you take a perimeter player who still has the ability to be a big player, you can kind of start moving him backward,” Smart said. “Because now the ball doesn’t come to him too often, but when it does, it’s a playmaking situation.”