JaJuan Johnson (Purdue)
(6'10) PF, 220 lbs.
JaJuan Johnson enters the pros after a great Purder career trending upwards as winner of the Big Ten MVP. At 6'10, Johnson provided a threat at Purdue by outrunning opposing big men in transition, using his great jumper, and shooting turnaround jumpers from the post.
Offensively, Johnson plays with a high skill level.
He can hit jumpers from anywhere, including the 3. When not scoring with his jumper, he posts up and uses turnaround jumpers and jump hooks.
Athletically, while not possessing a very strong build, he routinely beats defenders down the court for easy baskets. If defenders are up on him while he has the ball on the perimeter, he has shown the ability to take one or two dribbles and shoot a jumper.
One thing to note is that he will not be able to post up in the NBA due to lack of strength and was pushed out of the paint by strong college players. He will be a great 4-man that will need to feed off of creating guards such as Rose.
Outside of scoring, Johnson did show the ability to pass back out of a double team as he was doubled often. Right now, he is not strong enough to be a great threat for pick-and-roll due to weak picks that will be set. Until he adds some weight, he will struggle in terms of finishing around the basket despite his wiry strength.
Defensively, Johnson possesses freakishly long arms to disrupt shots and play the passing lanes. However, with Johnson's lack of strength and not much experience defending pick-and-rolls as he played the five, it will take a while for Johnson to the defensive demands of an NBA PF.
Currently, he is not strong enough to guard low-post players, and while he increased his rebounding to 8 rebounds a game, he is not a very strong rebounder.
JaJuan Johnson is likely to have a long career in the NBA, but for a limited role initially.
He has great strengths in terms of skill level, long wingspan, and size with decent athleticism. However, he also has major weaknesses lacking in strength, rebounding, and question marks surrounding his toughness.
He'll likely initially play the roll of stretch four who can run the floor and block some shots for 15-20 minutes a game. He reminds me of a David West type player. His game is suited for being a good shooter at his size, providing solid athleticism, has several flaws, will not be a star player, but like David West, he is a senior that is a steal in the late first and will be in the league for a while.
I see JaJuan's draft stock increasing throughout the draft and possibly being outside of the Bulls range.
How Does he Fit on the Bulls?
Currently, I am for Bulls taking players that will stay on their roster. However, my first priority is to try to get someone that provides more of an impact and toughness for Coach Thibs or a Shooting Guard that fits our need; if one that can play in the league is available (don't settle).
If we cannot trade up for a more defined impact player, than I am definitely for drafting JaJuan Johnson and thinking we get a steal. I think he provides skills that translate to the NBA, provides a solid basketball IQ, would be a great floor-spacer for Rose while working well with either Noah or Asik.
He'd provide a scoring threat off the bench and more depth to our front court in case we are interested in using some of our front court players for trade bait. His length will also be an asset in Thibs defensive philosophy.