Johnson spent five seasons at Colorado and had a fantastic career. In his 127 career games, which included two NCAA Tournament appearances, he scored nearly 1500 total points and over 700 rebounds. With his creative, skilled and explosive offensive game, XJ can (and will) score from anywhere on the floor. He also has a tendency to catch fire during the most important games.
This past season was unequivocally XJ’s best with the Buffs. Johnson had played small forward his entire career, but once Tad Boyle decided to go small, he stepped in at played exceptionally well at power forward. At the 4-spot, his lethal shooting and strong interior scoring made him a matchup problem for the opposition. On defense, XJ fought on every possession and was fierce on the glass. For the season, Johnson posted career highs in points (14.8 per game), rebounds (5.9), assists (1.0) and PER (21.6).
It’s difficult to capture XJ’s chances of reaching the NBA, but he’s never been one to back down. Two years ago, Xavier Johnson tore his Achilles tendon and was forced to take a medical redshirt during the 2015-16 season. An Achilles tear is the single most devastating injury in basketball, so it’s a testament to the kind of person XJ is that he not only came back from the injury, but he came back better than ever. If he can work as hard as he did to come back from that, it wouldn’t be the least bit surprising to see him make a name for himself during the Summer League.
The Nuggets start Summer League play on July 7. If you want to see XJ suit up in the blue and gold, coverage will be split between NBA TV and ESPN networks.