David Johnson making massive surge on NBA Draft boards

True sophomore David Johnson has taken his game to the next level for Louisville basketball this season and the NBA is taking notice.

After a Covid-shortened 2019-2020 season, then-true freshman David Johnson had a fantastic run in ACC play suddenly halted. That gave him ample time and energy to putting in the work to work on one key thing his game was missing. Three-point shooting.

Johnson is now a true sophomore and a savvy veteran on a very young Louisville team in 2021 and his work is starting to pay off.

After shooting an abysmal 5-for-23 from three-point land as a freshman and looking very uncomfortable as a shooter, Johnson has made it one of the best components to his game this year as he is 16-for-35 beyond the arc in just nine games this season.

He is not just a simple spot-up shooter either. He is an ascending player at being able to create his own jump shot off of the dribble. This ability has really made him a force to be reckoned with on all three levels of the floor.

Johnson is as complete as they come as an offensive prospect and his length and quickness allows him to be a very good defender with upside to grow as well.

Those that cover the NBA Draft are beginning to take notice of his abilities as well.

Let’s take a look at where mock drafts project Johnson to be taken in the 2021 NBA Draft.

Mock Drafts

 The Athletic ($$): Pick 12, Washington Wizards

Sam Vecenie, the author of this mock, does a fantastic job of breaking down Johnson’s game in-depth.

NBC Sports: Pick 14, Chicago Bulls

Authors’ Note:

Much of Johnson’s freshman year consisted of recovery from a shoulder injury and moderate time coming off the bench. This season he should take over the lead PG role for the Cardinals.

Bleacher Report (Dec. 24): Pick 18, Phoenix Suns

Author’s note:

Johnson’s shooting is still a question mark (7-of-21 3PT), but a jumper could go a long way for a 6’5″, 210-pound guard with strong two-point scoring abilities, passing skills and defensive tools. Optimism is slowly building around his shot, with Johnson making seven threes through six games after hitting only five total as a freshman.

NBA Draft Room: Pick 19, Boston Celtics

Author’s note:

A big lead guard with a thick frame and lots of strength. Not yet much of a 3pt threat.

Clearly, Johnson is making waves amongst those who cover the draft. His surge should be monumental when those who get to see a full season of him can envision the three-point development he has made.

NBA general managers will be catching on sooner rather than later to just how much he has improved in one offseason and you would have to imagine that they will be champing at the bit to get a lengthy point guard with great court vision and a complete offensive game on to their team.

The next couple of months could be Johnson’s last as a Louisville Cardinal. His stock is starting to take off and he is just scratching the surface of what his talent could eventually become.

Do not be shocked if Johnson is a lottery pick when all is said and done.