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Klutch Sports Agency announced Friday night that forward Keldon Johnson and the San Antonio Spurs agreed to a four-year, $80 million contract extension.
Johnson’s previous deal had been set to end at the conclusion of the 2022-23 season, but he is now under contract through 2026-27.
The 22-year-old Johnson is coming off the best season of his career, as he averaged 17.0 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 2.1 three-pointers made per contest in 75 games.
San Antonio originally selected Johnson with the No. 29 overall pick in the first round of the 2019 NBA draft, and he has progressively gotten better in each of his three NBA seasons.
After appearing in just 17 games as a rookie, Johnson made big strides in 2020-21, averaging 12.8 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game while shooting 47.9 percent from the field and 33.1 percent from beyond the arc.
Also, at the end of the 2020-21 campaign, Johnson was part of the USA Select team, which practiced with and played scrimmages against the United States men’s national basketball team.
When Bradley Beal was unable to join Team USA for the Summer Olympics in Tokyo because of health and safety protocols, Johnson was named his replacement, and he went on to win an Olympic gold medal as part of the team.
That proved to be a nice launching pad for Johnson entering the 2021-22 season, as he firmly established himself as one of the Spurs’ top players.
Now, Johnson may be the Spurs’ unquestioned go-to guy, especially after San Antonio traded All-Star guard Dejounte Murray to the Atlanta Hawks a couple of weeks ago.
The Spurs have missed the playoffs in each of the past three seasons, and trading Murray is likely a sign that they intend to enter into a rebuild.
San Antonio has some other solid, young talent, including Devin Vassell and 2022 first-round pick Jeremy Sochan, but Johnson is undoubtedly the most polished young player they have on the roster.
Signing him to an extension suggests the Spurs view Johnson as the centerpiece of their rebuild, and with few established players around him, Johnson seems poised for a career year in 2022-23 and perhaps even an All-Star nod.