Miami Heat player preview: Tyler Johnson

Nov 27, 2015; New York, NY, USA; Miami Heat guard Tyler Johnson (8) drives around New York Knicks guard Jerian Grant (13) during the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 27, 2015; New York, NY, USA; Miami Heat guard Tyler Johnson (8) drives around New York Knicks guard Jerian Grant (13) during the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
5 of 5
Next
Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports /

The 2016-17 season

For a player used to challenges, the coming season should come naturally to Johnson. Despite signing a large contract, the Heat have a number of players vying for playing time in the backcourt.

A recent injury to Josh Richardson could open the door for Johnson to establish himself to commence the season. Ironically, it was Johnson’s mid-season injury last year that helped Richardson thrive as a rookie.

The Chris Bosh scenario will also factor into Johnson’s prospects. With still no resolution to Bosh’s recurring blood clots on the horizon, a worst-case scenario is certainly something the Heat will be considering.

In that instance, the Heat would likely look to go small and feature a mix of players at the three and four spot. This could mean Justise Winslow plays more at the 4, and both Richardson Dion Waiters featuring at the 3 more regularly. As a result, this would free up time in the backcourt for Johnson to capitalize upon.

Regardless of the uncertainty, Johnson is everything the Heat look for in a player – fearless, hardworking, selfless. Furthermore, Johnson certainly appears to be a late bloomer. The rapid improvement he has made in his short time in Miami should be highly encouraging moving forward. Remember, he is still just 24.

Next: What Could Go Wrong For the Heat This Season

Head coach Erik Spoelstra will be rapt in that knows what he is going to get out of Johnson. Flat-out hustle and energy every minute he’s on the court. A skill-set that can be highly complimentary to a number of different lineups.

If Johnson can further improve his strengths and iron out some deficiencies, that large contract he signed in the summer should prove a worthy investment.