On Friday night, Wesley Johnson showed why the Lakers think he can be a very good defender.
During his introductory press conference, the Lakers made it known that they think Johnson can develop into a Trevor Ariza or Michael Cooper-type player, while Mike D’Antoni recently said that he hopes he can fill a Shawn Marion-like role.
Against the Spurs, Johnson showed how he can use his length and athleticism to make it hard for the opposing team to score – he blocked a shot at the rim on one possession and later forced a jump ball with Kawhi Leonard after using his 7’1″ wingspan to deny the 22-year-old a look at the basket.
In the video below, Johnson did a small thing that turned into a dunk for Jodie Meeks: He used his length to intercept Patty Mills’ pass. Meeks ended up getting the glory as he threw down the slam in transition – he should’ve probably passed it back to Wesley to reward his defense – but it’s a good example of how this Lakers team can get easy points on the break this year.