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Rockets Bringing Alexander Johnson to Houston for a Tryout

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The Houston Rockets are bringing in Sioux Falls Skyforce forward Alexander Johnson for a tryout this week and are expected to sign Johnson for the rest of the season if it works out, according to ESPN's Marc Stein.

Johnson averaged 23 points and 11.1 rebounds while shooting 57% from the field in 22 games for the Skyforce, including 10 starts.

If you're looking for more than numbers on Johnson, I would like to direct you to my piece about the 6-foot-9 forward from March 15th in which I begin with some superb hyperbole:  "Alexander Johnson is the most NBA-ready big man the NBA Development League has ever seen."

The only thing I really have to add to that are that his turnover numbers are downright worrisome: averaging 4.1 turnovers in 32 minutes of action when playing in the post is not a good thing.  In fact, it's the second worst in the league as he trails only Iowa's point guard, Curtis Stinson - who is averaging 4.2 turnovers per game in over 42 minutes per game.

Johnson has had one other tryout this season, March 16th with the Milwaukee Bucks, though that spot eventually went to Darnell Jackson.  Marc Stein has reported one other D-League tryout this season, Dwayne Jones trying out for the Dallas Mavericks, though that spot eventually went to Von Wafer.  If you're into conspiracy theories as to why I was right in picking Sioux Falls as my D-League champions, there is your case.

If the Rockets do sign Johnson, it'll be interesting to see how it affects their D-League team, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers. 

  • Will it be for insurance at the power forward spot so they can assign, and reunite, former Viper call-up Mike Harris with the D-League?  
  • Will it mean nothing other than that they wanted to get his rights secured for Summer League?

Who knows, really?  Well, probably Marc Stein since he seems to have taken over my D-League beat.