Joe Marcus Johnson is a professional American basketball player who was born in Little Rock, Arkansas. Johnson went to the University of Arkansas although he had scholarships from Duke, Connecticut and many other schools after he carried an incredible reputation for basketball from high school. Johnson took his game with the Razorbacks to a whole new level, leading the team in his freshman year in scoring average (16.0) and rebounds (5.7) per game to become the first freshman ever to do so at the University of Arkansas.
Johnson was in college for just two seasons before decided to register for the 2001 NBA Draft. He was picked at 10th overall by the Boston Celtics and was scheduled to make frequent appearances on court. Although Johnson start 33 of his first 38 games in his rookie season, the Celtics began approaching playoffs and Johnson was relegated to the bench more often than before.
Soon, he was on his way out of Boston and headed towards Phoenix to play for the Suns. The move paid great dividends as Johnson averaged at 15.2 points per game over his three and a half seasons at Phoenix. During this time, he improved his three-point shooting to become one of the best in that department in the NBA while also working on his ball handling skills.
In 2005, Johnson’s contract expired at the end of the 2004-05 season and he left the Suns to move to the Atlanta Hawks.
Johnson had a great start as a Hawk and led the team in scoring with 20.2 points per game, 6.5 assists per game, 128 3-pointers scored and 1.26 steals per game in a team leading 40.7 minutes playing time per game. He also played in all 82 games for the team and completed 346 continuous games in the NBA.
The following year, Johnson was named to the US Men’s Senior Basketball team. He represented USA at the 2006 FIBA World Championships and won the Bronze medal with the team.
Back at the NBA, Johnson was scoring heavily at 25.0 points per game with 4.4 assists and 4.2 rebounds, only lagging behind Allan Iverson in the scoring average. After Jason Kidd injured his back before the All-Star break, Johnson was called on to replace him in the Eastern Conference All-Star team to hand him his first ever appearance at the Gala event. The following year, Johnson again made it to the 2008 All-Star Game, albeit as a reserve. He averaged at 21.7 points per game during the season and helped the Hawks reach the playoffs for the first time in 9 years. His 21.7 points per game got him the Eastern Conference Player of the Month twice.