Louisville basketball: What scouts have said about the newest commit Ty-Laur Johnson
Ty-Laur Johnson claimed the last available scholarship from Louisville Head Coach Kenny Payne yesterday. The recruitment of Johnson was eerily similar to Miami transfer Danilo Jovanovich’s recruitment. Both of them went completely under the radar and their commitment announcements came out of nowhere.
The consensus No. 1 overall prospect out of the state of New York, according to 247Sports, has been praised by the fanbase thus far, largely because he is a point guard. There was a need for another player to step in and fill the open position in the backcourt and Ty-Laur Johnson can do just that.
It was hard to imagine a transfer would be willing to come into the situation that Louisville has with Skyy Clark as their primary ball-handling guard and Koron Davis who also played point guard at the JUCO level, and accept a potential bench role. But, a high school recruit like Ty-Laur Johnson is perfect for that scenario.
Johnson de-committed from Penny Hardaway and the University of Memphis roughly a month ago, and about a month before Johnson’s de-commitment three-star forward David Tubek de-committed from Penny Hardaway and has since committed to Seton Hall.
The former NBA lottery pick lost two pieces of his recruiting class in about a month, but as of now he still holds onto the prized piece of his recruiting haul., four-star guard Mikey Williams. But as far as Ty-Laur Johnson, one man’s loss is another man’s gain, and for Kenny Payne, his gain is an elite scorer with no fear of driving into the paint.
In 2021, as a sophomore, he won the MVP of the All City Classic, leading Team New York over Team Philadelphia with 22 points, 8 assists, and 3 steals. Team NY won 80-75.
Class of 2023 Final Score New York 80 Philly 75. MVP Ty-Laur Johnson (St. Benedict’s Prep) 22 points 8 assist 3 steals pic.twitter.com/dSlvrjDwvG
— All City Classic (@PhillyUSABBall) September 19, 2021
David Cordova is a scout for Recruit the Bronx and he has included Ty-Laur Johnson in many of his Top Performer pieces. In the 2022 edition of the Ballin’ in the Bronx, Ty-Laur Johnson was one of the standout players. Here is what David Cordova had to say about him then:
“A guard that finds ways to make an impact on a game, even when he is not scoring. Has a good feel for the game and will take opportunities to make shots when on the court. Despite his size, he is not afraid to go up for rebounds and then go out on the break.”
247Sports’ Eric Bossi also commented on his game in 2022, saying:
“Speed is the name of the game for Johnson. He’s a blur in the open court, tough for defenders to stay in front of during one on one situations and he’s a very clever scorer around the rim. The jump shot isn’t quite where he wants it to be just yet, but it’s getting there.”
Johnson competed in the EYBL Session in Louisville in 2022 as well. Here is what HoopSeen’s Josh Tec had to say about his performance there:
“In terms of pure production from the point guard spot, I can’t say that I saw anyone better than Tylaur Johnson. He’s aggressive in his attack and uses his quickness to get to his spots on the floor. Johnson is a terrific scorer from all levels, but what impressed me the most was his passing. He’s a walking double-double because of how well he distributes the ball.”
In 2023, he performed in the Hoops Showdown, and David Cordova was back on the trail in scouting him:
“A guard that has excellent court vision and is able to showcase his playmaking ability to the fullest. Has the ability to showcase his athleticism, as he can also go up for a dunk. Is a great distributor when it comes to his teammates going towards the basket.”
When he originally committed to Memphis, 247Sports’ Adam Finkelstein provided this scouting report on him:
“Johnson is a volume scoring guard who put up over 30 points per game as a junior at St. Benedict’s (NJ) and averaged over 18 in the EYBL. He’s very talented and confident with the ball, but has a tendency to dominate it at times.
While he struggled a bit early in the EYBL season, he hit his stride over the summer when some roster changes allowed him maximum volume and freedom as a playmaker.
Johnson is very tight with his handle and plays with a lot of pace. He’s in constant attack mode, but changes speeds very well with a series of hesitation moves and is also very adept at getting into the lane and navigating tight spaces. He plays under-the-rim, but has a lot of touch as a lay-up maker.
He’s a bit of a streaky shooter who converted just 27% from behind the arc, but 77% of his free-throws, in the EYBL. His release is clean and repeatable, and should be more consistent as he improves the balance in his lower body. Johnson also has pull-ups and floaters in the mid-range area to be a true three-range scoring threat.
Defensively, he has quick hands that allow him to be a playmaker on that end, but has to commit to sitting down in a stance and guarding for stops.
Physically, he’s a tad undersized with a naturally slighter build, but is gradually building up his body, and tough enough to compensate for whatever he may currently lack in inches and weight.”
And once he committed to Louisville, he included nearly the same scouting report in a recent article but also adjusted it for how Johnson would fit in at Louisville. To which he said:
“Johnson’s commitment is an important one, not just because it continues to upgrade the overall talent and depth of the roster, but because he provides a much-needed lead guard.
While Clark is arriving with the expectation that the ball will be in his hands, he has historically been more of a combo-guard than a true point. He shared the ball with Jalen Hood-Schifino as a senior at Montverde Academy and then had a flat assist-to-turnover ratio through 13 games at Illinois with 2.1 assists and 2.1 turnovers per game. Even if he is up to running the team to extend that Payne hopes, Louisville still lacked a back-up point guard until Johnson came on board.”
From all accounts, it sounds like he is an impressive get for Head Coach Kenny Payne and it will be fun to watch him play with Louisville.