Yes, the Wolves were demolished by the Lakers in the 2nd half last night, but there was one great thing we saw in that game. Wes Johnson’s confidence is at an all time high.
Throughout the first half of the season Wolves fans were complaining about Wes’ lack of killer instinct, and inability to shoot when he has a step on his man. Those concerns are no more. Last night, as well as the two before, we have seen Johnson taking his man off the dribble, and scoring from all over the basketball court. To see him be able to do this to Kobe last night was a sign of great things to come for Wes.
Wes still seems to lack the killer instinct to attack the basket and draw fouls, but with a push from his coaches, and helpful tips from players around the league he can turn that around quickly. Johnson has the tools to be a guy that gets to the rim consistantly, and draw fouls with the best of them. He has a quick first step, and explosiveness in his jumping ability. All he needs is a bit more confidence from his peers, and some hard work put in during the offseason, which with his summer plans, I don’t see any scenerio where that doesn’t improve.
The Star Tribune had an article prior to the game stating that Wes and Kobe have a close relationship for a superstar-rookie combination that have never been on the same team. Last summer, Kobe allegedly called up Wes (who shares an agent with Kobe) and had him come to L.A. to work out with him prior to his surgery. The plan is to do the same this summer, which can mean nothing but great things for Wes’ future. Watching Kobe train for hours everyday, and to see the intensity he brings to the gym can only show Wes a glimpse of what he will have to do to someday be on a level anywhere near elite status. Hopefully he sees his potential the same way others do, because Wes Johnson has all the physical tools to become an All Star in this league.