Phoenix Suns’ Cameron Johnson details key area of improvement this offseason

Phoenix Suns, Cameron Johnson. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports
Phoenix Suns, Cameron Johnson. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports /

With three years of NBA experience under his belt, Phoenix Suns’ forward Cameron Johnson understands there’s plenty of improvement left in his own finely tuned game.

The 26-year-old had easily his best season to date in 2021-22, certifying himself as one of the best sixth men in the league. Now, with the opportunity of a starting role potentially up for grabs, Johnson is preparing to mould himself into a much more diverse offensive weapon.

Cameron Johnson is hoping his own personal growth can become a crucial element to the Phoenix Suns’ bounceback in 2022-23.

Speaking with Arizona Republic’s Duane Rankin, Johnson identified the key focus area that he’s working on during this offseason.

"“Playing with the ball in my hands. Being somebody that can be relied on as a scorer and creator. Not just somebody that relies on other people to get their buckets. I think it takes a balance…That’s been the main focus. I think that’s something both Mikal and I are focusing on. Give our team an added dimension in the future”."

Johnson has been primarily a catch-and-shoot player throughout his career to date. He’s been one of the most effective players in the league in that role, shooting an exquisite 42.2% from three-point range last season.

Phoenix Suns
Phoenix Suns (Photo by Alex Bierens de Haan/Getty Images) /

He clearly wishes to develop into much more than an off-ball player though. In 2021-22, 62.4% of Johnson’s field-goal attempts were catch-and-shoot opportunities. On top of that, 91% of his attempts came after two dribbles or less.

Even if he does develop his ball-handling, playmaking and isolation scoring, it’s difficult to envisage Johnson doing a heap more in that sense. With Chris Paul and Devin Booker next to him, Johnson needs to remain the elite off-ball player he is.

Still, these elements will be needed at certain stages – whether it’s when Paul and/or Booker are on the bench, when they may be missing games, or just late in the shot-clock when the ball is rotated to Johnson and he needs to make a play.

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So, how will Johnson’s shot diet change next season, and how will his efficiency alter as a result? That’s just one of the question marks on a young roster as each player continues to explore their potential output at NBA level.