These under the radar free agents could help the Bucks at small forward

DETROIT, MICHIGAN - FEBRUARY 10 (Photo by Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MICHIGAN - FEBRUARY 10 (Photo by Mike Mulholland/Getty Images) /
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San Antonio Spurs: Stanley Johnson
HOUSTON, TEXAS – DECEMBER 19 (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /

The Milwaukee Bucks could target Stanley Johnson

Stanley Johnson could be on the Bucks’ radar this off-season. Johnson was selected by the Pistons with the eighth overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft but has found himself playing for the Sioux Falls Skyforce of the NBA G-League as of late.

He’s spent most of his career with the Pistons but went on to suit up for the New Orleans Pelicans, Toronto Raptors, Los Angeles Lakers, and eventually, the San Antonio Spurs. It’s been an eventful sort of career, to say the least, over which he averaged 6.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game in his career.

This is just to say that he’s a journeyman still chipping away for a place in this league. This means he is a free agent and would likely be willing to sign a minimum contract. The 6-foot-7 forward is also still just 26 years old as of this writing.

Johnson is a versatile wing with excellent size who can play both forward positions. He’s also a good defender and rebounder, and he still has some offensive upside. If the Bucks can snag him with what little resources they have in the tank, he could prove to be an effective piece for them.

According to Cleaning the Glass, opponents shot 4.4 effective field goal percentage points less in the 425 minutes Johnson played for San Antonio versus when he was sitting on the bench. That’s good for the 96th percentile of players at Stanley’s position.

Interestingly, Johnson played just 11 percent of his minutes for the Spurs at small forward — the bulk of his playing time was at the center position.

It would be disingenuous not to mention that Johnson has, by and large, struggled to find consistent playing time in his career. Wherever he’s gone, he’s been asked to do completely different things, play varying roles on a roster, and played under a variety of circumstances. Still, he has still flashed the potential to be a solid role player in the NBA.

One reason for this is Johnson has built up a reputation for not being the best shooter or ball-handler. Most recently, though, Stanley shot at a respectable 45 percent clip during his tenure with the San Antonio Spurs, albeit on just 1.3 attempts per game. He was eventually waived after playing just 30 games for the Spurs before he had the chance to demonstrate how consistent he could be.

Johnson is still a young player with a lot of potential. He has the ability to be a good defender and rebounder, and he has some offensive upside. If he can finally find a role that he can settle into in this league, he still has the potential to be a solid role player.

Hopefully, that role can be shutting down elite wings next to Giannis Antetokounmpo.