California Love: Wes Johnson to represent Wolves in Rookie Challenge

Myles Brown —  February 2, 2011 — 4 Comments

"Ambition Az A Ridah"

It’s not the news we’ve all been holding our breath for, but it’s worth celebrating nonetheless, right? Despite his recent struggles, our rangy forward has earned himself a place amongst this year’s All-Star festivities. So here’s three cheers for Wes Johnson. Mostly because he doesn’t like twos. Or free throws, for that matter….

I kid, I kid. Because I care.

“This is a well-deserved honor for Wes and our entire organization is proud that he’ll be representing us in the Rookie-Sophomore game,” Wolves head coach Kurt Rambis said. “Wes works extremely hard every day to become a better player. This announcement is a testament to the strides he’s already taken this year and the bright future he has in the league.”


Johnson, drafted fourth overall out of Syracuse in the 2010 NBA Draft, ranks fourth among rookies in scoring at 9.4 ppg, tied for fifth in assists at 2.0 apg, and second in three-point percentage at 38.9%. He’s scored in double figures 19 times this season, including each of his last four outings. Johnson has hit at least one three-pointer in a game 34 times this season, second-most among rookies, and is on pace to join Stephon Marbury (107 three-pointers in 1996-97) as the only rookies in Wolves history to hit 100+ treys in a season. Johnson scored a career-high 24 points while tying the Wolves rookie record with six three-pointers in Minnesota’s Dec. 27 win over New Orleans.

Now given the ever lowly state of our franchise, a Rookie Challenge contestant should be considered nothing more than a formality. However, it’s not as much of a tradition as one would think. Last year Jonny Flynn and Kevin Love made the Rookie and Sophomore teams respectively, but due to Love’s snub in ’09 these were the first Wolves to take part in Saturday’s showcase since Randy Foye in 2007. And not surprising to anyone-including himself-Jonny won’t be competing against his fellow Orangeman this year.

Oh, and the last Wolf before Foye? None other than Wally Sczerbiak in 2001.

But before we get all angsty about Joe Smith, let’s not forget Ricky Rubio, another sure thing gone awry. You see, whether by bad luck or bad decisions, we’ve been unable to procure enough talent through the draft worthy of All-Star (Weekend) attention. So how can we expect those same players to even carry us towards mediocrity?

That’s why Wes deserves that pat on the back, rub on the head and knock on your nearest piece of wood. He’s representing not only our team, but our progress.

We hope.

Myles Brown

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4 responses to California Love: Wes Johnson to represent Wolves in Rookie Challenge

  1. He has palyed better of late. He seems to be more agressive driving the ball more. Here’s to hoping working out with Kobe over this summer brings big dividens to next season( if there is one.)

  2. I like what I’ve seen out of Wes lately, I had high doubts because we hadn’t seen really any explosiveness to his game, but that’s starting to come around.

    I don’t know, I think the talent is there with this kid. I think he can be a cross between Danny Granger (offensively) and Shawn Marion (defensively).

    I believe both players stayed for four years in college too.

  3. You “think” he will be a cross between Granger and Marion, or you are “hoping” for that?

    I’d be ecstatic he was a Granger/Marion combo! Hell yeah! Do I think it will actually ever happen? Probably not very likely…

  4. Well I just think his offensive game reminds me of Danny Granger a little, and to be honest he has a lot more hops than Granger does, he could be more explosive. Defensively he has really high potential, Marion might be a stretch, but the thing I like about the analogy is that neither player was overly highly sought after in the draft. They where both top 20 picks but it wasn’t like there was a ton of hype for either. I can just see Wes developing into a really sweet baller

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