Cam Johnson sees long-term Nets contract as opportunity to ‘prove it’


Cam Johnson acquired his generational-wealth contract this offseason with the Nets.

However he insists the life-changing cash gained’t change him or his strategy.

“No, identical strategy: Simply get higher,” Johnson instructed The Publish at Staff USA follow in Las Vegas. “Get higher and nonetheless really feel — I feel the principle factor that I’ve all the time felt since I’ve been within the league is simply to show it. To show it on daily basis. And work for it on daily basis and enhance on daily basis, and I’ll proceed that mindset so long as I play.”

Together with getting injured Ben Simmons again on the ground, Brooklyn’s high summer season precedence had been getting Johnson again beneath contract.

Final month’s four-year, $94.5 million deal final month tied him up long-term.

“In a way [it’s a relief] for certain,” stated Johnson, who had rejected a four-year, $72 million supply from Phoenix final season.

He acquired traded, together with Mikal Bridges and picks, to the Nets for Kevin Durant in February, changing into a part of their long-term retooling.

“It’s a part of the method,” Johnson stated. “I used to be in the identical scenario final 12 months the place we didn’t come to an settlement. I wouldn’t say it added any further stress onto the season, taking part in that final contract 12 months. So it’s on one hand a little bit of a reduction and undoubtedly a blessing; however it’s enterprise as regular. Simply assault on daily basis, assault the season, attempt to be a greater participant on daily basis.”

Cameron Johnson #2 of the Brooklyn Nets
Cameron Johnson #2 of the Brooklyn Nets
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Sure, Brooklyn acquired 4 first-round picks and a swap for Durant.

However Johnson and Bridges — the one Nets on the Staff USA roster for the FIBA World Cup — changing into higher gamers is basically a should for Brooklyn to take a step up.

The Nets, who had a dropping document after the commerce deadline, reshuffled the squad round Johnson and Bridges.

The latter is ready to start out alongside middle Nic Claxton. Johnson, Dorian Finney-Smith and Spencer Dinwiddie additionally began after the deadline, and will conceivably be pushed by Simmons.

Both means, Johnson sees being beneath contract long-term alongside pal Bridges as an opportunity for each to stage up, and produce the Nets with them.

“I feel it’s a chance for us to develop and get higher,” Johnson stated. “We acquired a terrific crew round us. And really versatile. A gaggle that’s very versatile with quite a lot of measurement and quite a lot of distinctive alternatives to play that means.”

Johnson was averaging 13.9 factors in Phoenix earlier than the commerce. However after arriving in Brooklyn, he boosted his manufacturing to 16.6, 4.8 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.4 steals, all on tempo for career-highs.

Even higher within the playoffs, Johnson poured in 18.5 factors and 5.8 boards on 50.9/42.9/85.7 % capturing splits. However, largely a catch-and-shoot participant thus far, he’s acknowledged the necessity to dribble, playmake and increase his all-around recreation this offseason.

“A little bit little bit of all the things, man,” Johnson stated. “With the ability to facilitate, put the ball on the ground and alter, assist all people on the courtroom. Engaged on getting completely different photographs out of various positions out of various actions.”

Originally reported as a $108 million deal, Johnson signed a $94.5 million deal last month
Cam Johnson signed a $94.5 million deal final month with the Nets.
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Staff USA is an opportunity for Johnson and Bridges to check his summer season progress.

Each began on the primary crew in Staff USA’s scrimmages towards USA Basketball’s Staff Choose on Friday.

However although Bridges began once more Saturday, Johnson was changed by Anthony Edwards.

Staff USA head coach Steve Kerr has been coy about who he’ll begin in Monday’s first exhibition, vs. Puerto Rico, however the Warriors coach is accustomed to the Nets’ so-called “Twins” from years of dealing with them of their Phoenix days.

“I already knew what sort of gamers they had been from teaching towards them, however they’re so mature. There’s a chilled sense from each guys,” Kerr instructed the media Friday. “They usually’re additionally modern-day basketball gamers: shoot the three, guard a number of positions, lengthy athletically. They’re big elements to this crew.”

Staff USA, which opens the World Cup Aug. 26 versus New Zealand, completed ninth 4 years in the past and hasn’t gained since 2014.

“It means loads, man. That is such a cool alternative,” Johnson stated. “I feel it’s such a terrific studying expertise to play alongside nice expertise, beneath nice management. It’s a chance I’m gonna do my greatest to benefit from.”


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