The Sky Tower Auckland Huskies are delighted to announce the signing of former NBA player Chris Johnson ahead of the upcoming Sal’s NBL season.
The experienced American has put pen to paper after recently returning to New Zealand following a stint playing in Bahrain.
We say ‘return’ as Chris is no stranger to these shores having spent much of the past twelve months in Auckland.
“My wife Tammy is from Takapuna so we came to New Zealand during the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic as it is a lot safer than being in the USA,” said Chris who is in no doubt he can add value to the Huskies team.
“With my experience I can bring a lot to the table both offensively and on defence and I’m looking forward to linking up with the team and being a valuable piece of the overall puzzle.
“I may not be a spring chicken but I’ve got a lot of basketball left and I’m looking forward to playing in front of family and the Huskies fans,” quips the 210cm forward who played in the NBA for the Portland Trailblazers, Boston Celtics, New Orleans Pelicans and Minnesota Timberwolves.
Currently in MIQ with Tammy and their 11 month year-old twins, for the second time in 12 months, he is looking forward to linking up with Huskies Head Coach Aaron Young again.
“Aaron helped me prepare for my stint in Bahrain earlier in the year which was really helpful.”
Likewise Aaron Young is looking forward to re-acquainting with the Huskies latest signing.
“I had the pleasure of working out Chris for a couple of months before he headed to Bahrain and got to build a relationship with him.
“He’s a good guy and a talented player so for me as a coach being able to work with someone like that was enhancing my skills as well.
“Now that he is part of the group it is very exciting. He is someone who can impact the game at both ends with his size and obviously his experience.
“But it is skill set that is really intriguing and appealing. He can shoot the ball, is a really good decision maker, and is almost like a guard playing in a 6’11” frame.
“Whenever you get someone like that on your team it’s pretty good!”
Johnson attended Louisiana State University and sits second on LSU’s all-time blocks list behind Shaquille O’Neill. In addition to his stints in the NBA he has also played professionally in Turkey, China, Lebanon and Puerto Rico.
Huskies fans can expect to see Chris at our first ever home game on Friday April 30th against the Manawatu Jets. Tickets are on sale for this first game, click here to purchase.
The Huskies begin their 2021 NBL campaign with a trip down the southern motorway on Sunday to take on the Franklin Bulls.