Big winner of the off-season at Spurs, Keldon Johnson will return next season with a new status as he will become the highest paid player in the Texas workforce in a year after signing a four-year, $74 million extension.
Asked by the San Antonio Express-News, the Olympic champion said he savored the moment with his family and he does not feel more disturbed than that by this considerable accomplishment.
“My parents were very moved. I was very moved. It was like a dream, like it wasn’t real. We partied, and I was back in the gym the next day. During the offseason, it was always full-time basketball on the program. I knew that if I put in the time and effort, overtime would come. I had blinders, I was preparing for this season. Today I am in the best shape of my life. The extension does not draw a line under all that, but it is good to be done with it.
Behind Dejounte Murray, he was probably the most consistent of the rather homogeneous group led by Gregg Popovich. Second option in attack, third best rebounder of the team, Keldon Johnson therefore seems destined to take over from Murray, gone to the Hawks at the head of an even younger team (second youngest average age in the league behind OKC), including three rookies.
“I have the impression of being a born leader and of being able to guide young people”believes the 22-year-old winger. . “I can’t wait to start the season. I can’t wait for the young people and I to be on the field, with the rage to win. I had the opportunity to talk to the rookies a bit when I went to Las Vegas and we all went out for a team dinner. They are cool people. It was good to see them play and observe their different personalities.
Even if San Antonio remains on a more than honorable season, Keldon Johnson nevertheless measures the magnitude of the task that presents itself for 2022-2023. More than ever, the Spurs will have to stick together in order to be able to resist over time.
“I know there will be a lot of ups and downs. That’s how it is in the NBA, an 82-game season. I’m just going to move on, and the young players know they can come and talk to me about anything on and off the pitch.”he concluded.