In the 2021 NBA draft, the Atlanta Hawks selected Duke Forward Jalen Johnson with the 20th overall pick. Johnson was touted to be a Modern Versatile forward, who can be a lob threat, pass the ball out of double teams and has the ability to hit the outside shot.
We saw the glimpse of his abilities and potential in the NBA Summer League this offseason with fellow Rookie Teammate Shariffe Cooper. Johnson put on a show in Las Vegas recording impressive stats and highlights for someone of his age
After this impressive display of his ability and the departure of sharpshooting Forward Tony Snell, I was pretty confident that Johnson would get into the rotation for coach Nate McMilan. But just after 5-6 regular season games Jalen Johnson was sent to the Skyhawks, the G-League affiliate of the Atlanta Hawks and coach Nate McMilan seemed to prefer Veteran Solomon Hill over the young rook
Despite his impressive performances in the G-League Johnson, averaging 19 Points 11 Rebounds and 4 assists. But he still wasn’t called up by the Hawks, as they coaches thought he was too ‘raw’
However, recently Veteran Forward Solomon Hill who was a decent piece to the Hawks rotation went down injured and was ruled out for the rest of season.
This could be the perfect opportunity for Johnson and Hawks to blend and finally figure out his position and role for the future because personally I think Johnson could be a great for struggling Hawks. He could do well in the John Collins role off the bench, catching lobs from Trae Young, hustling for loose balls and knocking down the outside shot.