Joe Johnson: Why the Knicks Are Lucky They Didn't Bring Him to the Big Apple
Although it is not yet official, it appears that Joe Johnson will be spending the next six years as a member of the Atlanta Hawks.
Reports have come out of Atlanta that the four-time All-Star will resign with the Hawks for approximately $119 million over six years.
Johnson's agent Arn Tellem published an article on the Huffington Post Website on Sunday, citing Johnson's loyalty to his community and teammates as the deciding factor in his decision.
"Their owners and new coach, Larry Drew, impressed Joe with their commitment to making the team championship-caliber. In turn, Joe felt equally committed to the Hawks, his teammates and the city of Atlanta," said Tellem.
At one point, it appeared that the Knicks, who made a point to meet with Johnson before they sat down with their main target, LeBron James, were the front-runner to land Johnson.
The Knicks had hoped that by signing Johnson, they could lure James and possibly Dwayne Wade or Chris Bosh to New York.
The Knicks were intrigued by the possibility of pairing Johnson with his old coach in Phoenix, Mike D'Antoni.
Johnson had experienced much success in D'Antoni's high powered offense, and many thought he would leave Atlanta to play under the bright lights of New York.
Tellem even hinted that Johnson "loved playing for D’Antoni and was excited by the possibility of joining him in New York. It seemed like a perfect match."
However, due to league restrictions, the Hawks were able to offer nearly $27 million more than any other team could, and as a result, Johnson took the money and re-signed.
Although Johnson is a four-time All-Star and averaged 21.3 points this past season, he is viewed by many as a second-tier player, undeserving of a maximum contract.
Johnson has certainly shown he is a valuable player in the regular season, but has not proved his worth in the postseason, averaging just under 13 points against the Orlando Magic this past postseason.
Furthermore, Johnson is 29 years old and has lodged almost 25,000 minutes over his career.
It is only a matter of time until the Hawks regret making a 29-year-old swingman the face of the franchise.
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