Tyler Johnson
Tyler Johnson
27-Year-Old GuardG
Phoenix Suns
Out
Injury Knee
Est. Return 10/23/2019
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Johnson exercised his $19.3 million player option to remain with the Suns after coming over from the Heat last season. The guard averaged 10.9 points, 3.0 assists and 2.9 rebounds in limited action for both Phoenix and Miami and appeared in just 57 games while dealing with a knee injury. His production went up during his 13 games in a Suns uniform, averaging 11.1 points, 4.2 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 1.1 steals. He logged 31.5 minutes per night in Phoenix, though he doesn't figure to see that much action in 2019-20 with the additions of veteran point guard Ricky Rubio and rookie point guard Ty Jerome to the backcourt. Johnson could still see minutes in the mid-20s, and if fully healthy and back to pre-injury form, he could provide some value in points, rebounds and assists. But overall, he's a risky fantasy pick. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a four-year, $50 million contract with the Heat in July of 2016. Traded to the Suns in February of 2019. Exercised $19.25 million player option for 2019-20 in June of 2019.
Will not play Monday
GPhoenix Suns
Knee
October 13, 2019
Johnson has been ruled out for Monday's preseason finale against the Nuggets due to right knee soreness, Kellan Olson of ArizonaSports.com reports.
ANALYSIS
While it doesn't appear to be anything serious, it is worth noting that it's the same knee that Johnson underwent surgery on last year. With a number of backcourt players now sitting for the Suns on Monday, Jevon Carter and Elie Okobo should be in line for expanded roles in the exhibition.
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Average Fantasy Points
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2015
2014
As a result of Dion Waiters being limited to 30 games last season prior to undergoing ankle surgery, Johnson started 39 of his 72 appearances and saw 28.5 minutes per contest. Though he made an improvement of 1.4 percent to his true shooting, Johnson averaged 2.0 fewer points per game last season compared to 2016-17 as a result of fewer field-goal and free-throw attempts. The fifth-year guard out of Fresno State also saw his rebounds (3.4), assists (2.3) and steals (0.8) per game fall, despite averaging only 1.3 fewer minutes than in 2016-17. Things don't seem likely to improve, either, as Josh Richardson emerged as a legitimate starter for the Heat last season and Waiters will be returning from his injury. With uncertainty surrounding his role, Johnson can probably be avoided until the latest rounds of most Fantasy drafts.
Johnson -- in his third season -- was given increased responsibility within the Heat’s offense during the 2016-17 campaign, seeing his usage rate rise from 16.8 to 20.9 percent. He’s essentially the definition of a combo guard, spending 53 percent of his time at point guard and 47 percent of his time at shooting guard last year. He continued to shoot the rock well from beyond the arc at 37.2 percent, though saw his overall field-goal percentage dip from 48.6 percent to 43.3 percent, largely due to his increased responsibility as a scorer. While Johnson didn’t make a huge leap in any of his counting stats, he impressively reduced his turnovers per 100 possessions from 2.8 to 2.1 despite his increased touches. The Heat have made no changes to their backcourt heading into the 2017-18 season, making it likely that Johnson will see a similar workload as he did last year. Though he probably won’t make huge statistical jumps, if Johnson is able to distribute at a slightly higher clip and increase his overall shooting efficiency, he’ll be a solid player to target in a variety of Fantasy formats because of his workload and ability to play both guard slots.
Johnson appeared in just 32 games for the Heat last season, but was able to show flashes of being an effective member of the team's backcourt rotation in his limited role, finishing with averages of 5.9 points, 2.5 rebounds, 1.3 assists, and 1.0 steal in nearly 19 minutes per game. Now, at 23 years old and entering just his second year in the league, Johnson has plenty of room to grow but currently remains buried on the team's depth chart. At the shooting guard position, he is likely already behind both Dwyane Wade and Gerald Green in the rotation, so he will have to beat out rookie guard Josh Richardson for that third spot. However, given how thin the team currently is at point guard, it is possible Johnson could see some run at that position. Regardless, Johnson is in the final year of his contract with Miami, so he will be looking to make the best of any time he gets on the floor. And when he is at his best, Johnson is a capable shooter and solid rebounder for someone his size, but his production relies entirely on his playing time.
Johnson earned a spot on the Heat after an impressive stretch of games playing in both the Orlando Pro Summer League and the Las Vegas Summer League for the Heat. In 11 games, he averaged 12.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 1.5 assists on 22 minutes per game. The rookie did enough to impress head coach Erik Spoelstra this summer, but the graduate of Fresno State may ultimately be the last guy on the bench this season for the Heat. Entering the season with an unguaranteed contract will likely pose problems for the 22-year-old's long-term status with Miami. It's not impossible to imagine him in a Heat uniform all season, although it seems like a foregone conclusion that he'll struggle to see much NBA action in 2014-15.
More Fantasy News
Cleared Saturday
GPhoenix Suns
October 12, 2019
Johnson (head) will participate in Saturday's preseason game against the Trail Blazers, Jamie Hudson of NBC Sports Northwest reports.
ANALYSIS
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Probable for Saturday
GPhoenix Suns
Head
October 11, 2019
Johnson (head) is listed as probable for Saturday's preseason game against Portland, Kellan Olson of ArizonaSports.com reports.
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Ruled out
GPhoenix Suns
Head
October 10, 2019
Johnson (head) has been ruled out for Thursday's exhibition against the Kings, Duane Rankin of The Arizona Republic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Questionable with migraine
GPhoenix Suns
Head
October 10, 2019
Johnson is questionable for Thursday's preseason game against the Kings due to a migraine, Kellan Olson of ArizonaSports.com reports.
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Logs 15 minutes in preseason debut
GPhoenix Suns
October 9, 2019
Johnson failed to score (0-4 FG, 0-1 3Pt) and contributed a steal in 15 minutes off the bench Tuesday in the Suns' 111-106 preseason win over the Timberwolves.
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