Tyler Johnson was a un-drafted free agent out of Fresno State, but could become one of the players that should have been taken with a mid to early 2nd round pick. Johnson, who is currently 22 years of age played on the Heat’s Summer League team and shined with various dunks throughout. With the latest injuries to starting shooting guard Dwyane Wade, the team signed Johnson to a ten day contract.
Johnson made his NBA debut versus the Golden State Warriors, he played two minutes in the game, but was able to get to the free throw line and make both of his free throws giving him his first NBA points. It’s fitting for Johnson, because he wrote a letter to the Warriors asking them to let him join their Warrior camp.
Johnson’s 10 day contract then expired with the Heat, and he was sent back down to the NBA Development League. After the news of Dwyane Wade’s hamstring injury that would require him to be out weeks broke, the Heat signed Johnson to his second 10 day contract. Johnson then started to get minutes for the Heat and shinned for them.
After the Spurs game, Johnson’s 2nd ten day contract with the Heat expired. Johnson was on sure whether or not he would be re-signed by the Heat to another 10 contract, be re-signed the rest of the season, or would never play for them again. Johnson said the following after the Heat-Spurs game.
“If this was last time I play basketball in my life, I got a chance to fulfill my dream”
On Sunday, Tyler Johnson heard his phone ringing. He paused for a moment after he noticed that the caller was Miami Heat head coach Erik Spolestra.
“Meet me in practice,” Spoelstra told the rookie shooting guard.
Johnson then learned that he was going to be signed by the Heat for the rest of the 2014-2015 NBA season. Spolestra had the following to say on Johnson’s new contract.
“He’s earned everything he’s gotten up to this point,” Spoelstra said. “Very tough, very competitive. He’ll be the last one in the gym. Those are the qualities that you like. He’s a promising guard prospect.”
With all the injuries that have happened to the Heat this season, he was certainly been needed during the last stretch of games for Miami.
Johnson described his meeting with Heat president Pat Riley “life changing” after he was told about being signed the rest of the year. Pat Riley also had the following to say about the Heat.
“All we can do is put our head down and make this playoff push,” Riley said. “This is an organization that has a lot of tradition of winning and the playoffs is almost mandatory for a situation like this, no matter what we’ve had to go through this whole year.”
No matter what happens from here on out, Tyler Johnson has lived his dream.
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