Miami Heat sign guard Tyler Johnson to deal: Analysis

Surprise summer league standout Tyler Johnson signed a deal for undisclosed terms with the Heat today, according to a team press release.

The Miami HEAT announced today that they have signed guard Tyler Johnson. Per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Most recently, Johnson appeared in 11 Summer League games with the HEAT and averaged 12.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 22.2 minutes while shooting 54.8 percent from the field, 46.7 percent from three-point range and 81.4 percent from the foul line.

The Fresno Bee is reporting that it’s a two-year deal believed to be non-guaranteed. The 6’4 guard turned down significant offers in Europe for the chance to make the Heat roster this season.

Johnson’s aggressiveness, shooting and athleticism stood out this summer. The late blooming guard improved dramatically in four years at Fresno State. He not only shot an impressive 43% on 132 3-point attempts last season, he also grabbed 7.3 rebounds per game. The rebounding probably won’t translate. But if he can keep up the tenacity of his game there is a chance to make the league eventually. That desire to play hard masks some of the inefficiencies of his game, which include somewhat substandard NBA athleticism and defense.

Johnson might just seem like a camp body, but the Heat are glaringly thin at shooting guard behind Dwayne Wade. The Heat also added journeyman Reggie Williams to their roster on Thursday, bringing them to 14 guaranteed contracts. That leaves only one spot for the guys they bring into camp to fight for.

My guess is that nothing comes of this signing and Johnson ends up in Europe. With his tenacious game and shooting acumen, he’s tailor made to play overseas. While I’m sure it’s a dream of Johnson’s to play in the NBA, the financial benefits he could reap by moving overseas could outstrip those of the NBA by quite a bit.

Gregory Mason

Greg is a regular contributor for Upside and Motor. You can find other work of his on ESPN's True Hoop affiliate Raptors Republic, among other places. Twitter: @VotaryofHoops