Sean Marks is finally getting his man.
Four years after signing Tyler Johnson to a four year, $50 million offer sheet —only to see Heat match it days later, Marks has signed the 6’4” combo guard to play out the remainder of this season.
To make way for Johnson, Nets waived Theo Pinson who’s played with Brooklyn —and Long Island— the last two years.
Both Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania reported the news...
Free agent guard Tyler Johnson has agreed to a deal with the Brooklyn Nets, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 24, 2020
In July 2016, Marks, with a ton of a cap room and Mikhail Prokhorov’s cash, went after both Johnson and Allen Crabbe, then restricted free agents. He lost out on both.
Johnson was 24 years old and Brooklyn thought he’d fit the script as Jeremy Lin’s backup and sixth man. The Heat, however, matched the offer and Johnson had a big season. Still they were committed to pay Johnson nearly $20 million in each of the last two years of his deal. Marks included the “poison pill” but it failed to deter owner Mickey Arison, who accused Marks of “poaching.”
According to various reports, when the Nets presented Johnson with the $50 million offer sheet, he left the room and threw up, then returned only to throw up again!
Johnson played two and a half seasons with Miami, as both a sixth man and starter, then at the trade deadline last year was traded to the Suns in a double salary dump that sent Ryan Anderson to the Heat. The Suns ultimately waived Johnson in February.
Johnson played well in his first two years in Miami, averaging 13.7 points a game as a sixth man in 2016-17 and 11.7 points in 39 starts the following year. However, his production began to decline last season. Before play was suspended, Johnson averaged only 5.7 points in 31 games. For his career, the undrafted Johnson has averaged 10.7 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.3 assists with a shooting line of 43/36/77.
“I was ready to go over there [Brooklyn]. Obviously I love Miami, but I was ready for Brooklyn,” Johnson told NetsDaily in 2017.
“Man it was a great feeling,” Johnson told Anthony Puccio with a smile. “You can tell by the conversations we were having that they were very interested in the sense of making me a focal point of this franchise, so I was definitely humbled by the belief they had in me.”
Here’s a video of Johnson’s highlights from the 2018-19...
The signing justifies what John Hollinger of The Athletic wrote earlier in the week...
Johnson’s reliably steady production rather suddenly fizzled into nothing in Phoenix this season, but he’s only 28 and we’re talking about a 515-minute sample. Make no mistake, he was baaaaad, but I’m having a hard time believing that his true ability level turned south quite this abruptly.
Teams in need of a fourth or fifth guard with some scoring pop will likely scour film on him carefully, with Denver and his one-time offer-sheet suitors in Brooklyn seeming to offer the cleanest fit.
Pinson, a fan favorite, has been the leader of the Nets bench whenever he wasn’t playing in Long Island, organizing the Nets famous dance routines.
Theo Pinson helped create the culture that the @BrooklynNets have today. From dancing with the team to celebrating on the bench, it was always good vibes. Gone but never forgotten. Thank you @tpinsonn pic.twitter.com/jhWYUlZWKe— Ajayi Browne (@ajayibrowne) June 24, 2020
The 6’7” guard played in 51 games over two seasons with Brooklyn, posting averages of 3.9 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 11.3 minutes per game. He also saw action in 43 games with the Long Island Nets, recording averages of 19.5 points, 6.1 rebounds, 5.9 assists and 1.0 steals in 34.8 minutes per contest.
Joe Tsai tweeted out his appreciation...
I appreciate the spirit and energy you brought to every game. https://t.co/x7LOVks0r8— Joe Tsai (@joetsai1999) June 24, 2020
The Nets roster now stands at 16.
Brooklyn can replace Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant with its two two-way players, Chris Chiozza and Jeremiah Martin.
Meanwhile, Wilson Chandler defended Irving’s stand in favor of boycotting the return-to-play.
Crazy to me how fans, ex players and players criticized Kyrie for voicing his opinion. A opinion that wasn’t wrong at all. Who cares if you didn’t like his delivery or the way he went about it. With everything that’s going on from police brutality to covid he had the backbone— Wilson Chandler (@wilsonchandler) June 24, 2020
Chandler also seemed to be uncertain whether he will play.
* backbone to speak his mind. Whether I’m on the court playing or not I respect and support his opinion.— Wilson Chandler (@wilsonchandler) June 24, 2020
NBA players have until Wednesday to inform the team of his plans.
- Brooklyn Nets Reportedly Sign Tyler Johnson For Backcourt Depth Without Irving, Waive Pinson - Shlomo Sprung - Forbes Sports
- Breaking down the Nets’ decision to waive Theo Pinson and sign Tyler Johnson - Alex Schiffer - The Athletic New York
- Nets waive Theo Pinson and will sign guard Tyler Johnson - New York Post
- Nets pick up Tyler Johnson - Greg Logan - Newsday
- Tyler Johnson pickup is low-risk, high reward for Nets - Kristian Winfield - New York Daily News
- Nets, free-agent guard Tyler Johnson agree to deal, sources say - ESPN
- BROOKLYN NETS WAIVE THEO PINSON - Brooklyn Nets