Ravern Johnson

RCSI: 87 (2007)
Height: 6'7" (201 cm)
Weight: 175 lbs (79 kg)
Age: 32
Position: SF
Jerseys: #24, #16, #8
High School: Coahoma County High School (Mississippi)
Hometown: Lyon, MS
Agent: Nick Lotsos
College: Mississippi St.
Current Team: Kauhajoki
Win - Loss: 2 - 2


All-Portsmouth Invitational Tournament, Third-Team

Jonathan Givony
Jonathan Givony
Kyle Nelson
Kyle Nelson
Joseph Treutlein
Joseph Treutlein
Apr 17, 2011, 04:03 pm
Joseph Treutlein

One of the best pure shooters in this year's draft class, Ravern Johnson had a solid showing at the Portsmouth Invitational, averaging 16.7 points per game on 40% three-point shooting (8-for-20) and 51% overall.

A fairly cut and dry prospect from an NBA perspective, Johnson does one thing extremely well and doesn't consistently contribute much elsewhere, as evidenced by his shallow stat line as a senior. Possessing superb shooting mechanics with a high release and incredibly quick release speed, Johnson is a threat to put the ball in the basket whenever the ball is in his hands.

Capable of scoring equally well moving off the ball or pulling up off one or two dribbles, Johnson has little trouble getting separation and is a good shooter on the move. He's at his best with open spot-up jumpers, something he didn't get many opportunities to do as a senior, which weighed down his overall percentages. According to Synergy, of the 245 halfcourt jump shots Johnson attempted, only 48 of them were of the unguarded catch-and-shoot variety, of which he scored 1.44 points per shot on (compared to 1.02 overall).

Looking to the NBA, Johnson's ability to move off ball and put up quick shots when the ball comes his way could make him an intriguing option as a shooting wing, while his physical profile is solid as well, as he possesses good length and at least average quickness and explosiveness. He still is sporting a very weak build, having little bulk to his frame, weighing in at a ridiculous 170 pounds, barely out-weighing players eight inches shorter than him, but for his style of offense, it doesn't hinder him much.

The biggest question mark for Johnson is what he can contribute when he isn't knocking down shots, as he hasn't shown much throughout his college career. Not a particularly strong passer, rebounder, or slasher, Johnson serves virtually only as a floor spacer when the ball isn't in his hands. Developing more propensity for off-ball cuts and offensive rebounds would be helpful, as he has the athleticism, but would probably require strengthening his frame.

The biggest short-term improvement Johnson could make is really buckling down on defense and putting his length and lateral quickness to good use, something he hasn't done frequently in his career. Showing little commitment to fundamentals and focus overall, Johnson often goes through the motions on this end of the court, which was mostly the case at Portsmouth. Once again, however, any improvements Johnson can make will ultimately be hindered somewhat by his lack of strength, something that will also need to be addressed.

Looking forward, Johnson does one thing extremely well with his shooting, while also having better length and athleticism than most other shooting specialists in the late second round to undrafted range of this draft. His lack of contributions elsewhere may ultimately hold him back, but he could find himself on a roster eventually if a team likes his shooting enough to try and work with the other areas of his game.

Top NBA Draft Prospects in the SEC, Part Four (#16-20)

Matt Kamalsky
Matt Kamalsky
Scott Nadler
Scott Nadler
Kyle Nelson
Kyle Nelson
Joseph Treutlein
Joseph Treutlein
Sep 27, 2009, 05:09 am
Kyle Nelson

After an unimpressive freshman campaign, Mississippi State wing Ravern Johnson emerged as a top contributor for Mississippi State. Johnson averaged 12.1 points as the Bulldog’s perimeter shooting specialist and finally began to live up to his high school hype. Even though he showed much improvement, Johnson is still a very raw prospect, very much one dimensional on offense and somewhat nonexistent on defense. This season, he must continue to show improvement while better using his size and athleticism on both ends of the floor.

At 6’7, Johnson has excellent size for wing positions, though he must add strength to his extremely skinny 190-pound frame. He is a solid athlete, even if he is not particularly explosive, but his lack of strength makes it difficult for him to really capitalize on his physical gifts at the collegiate level. By getting stronger and working on his fundamentals, he can improve his athleticism significantly and prove to scouts that he can physically withstand competition at the NBA level.

On offense, Johnson is primarily a shooting specialist, though he has shown flashes of developing into a more complete scorer. Even though he is a good perimeter shooter with outstanding range, making 39.5% of his 3-point attempts last season, his form could use some serious work. He elevates nicely and has a very high point of release, but his form is disjointed and he has a hitch at the top of his shooting stroke that interrupts the fluidity of his shooting motion. When he rushes his shot, his form falls apart and he shows all sorts of excess movement in his lower body. Similarly, improving his shot selection is essential in order to maximize his efficiency at this level. Last season, he showed a tendency to take difficult and off-balance shots, sometimes without any teammates underneath the basket to rebound his misses. As a likely role player at the next level, such lapses in judgment are unacceptable.

While he is known primarily as a perimeter shooter, Johnson has showed some potential in other areas of his game. At times, he showed some flashes of a mid-range game, pulling up off of the dribble inside of the three-point line in both transition and half court situations. He can also get to the basket by utilizing a decent first step and solid body control before finishing with a soft floater, lay-up, or dunk. His ball handling certainly has to improve if he wishes to increase his versatility on the offensive end, primarily with his left hand. His lack of strength also hurts him here as he has trouble finishing with contact around the basket, and almost never gets to the free throw line. At this point, he is most effective almost exclusively as a perimeter shooter, and scouts will be watching to see if he can add new moves to his repertoire.

On the defensive end, Johnson has a tremendous amount of work to do if he wants to play at the next level. Despite decent size, lateral quickness, and length, he has very poor fundamentals and lacks consistent focus on the defensive end. He is inefficient guarding perimeter players and far too skinny to defend power forwards at this level or the next. Similarly, despite his physical gifts and the fact that he sees quite a few minutes at the power forward position, he grabs just 4.0 rebounds per 40 minutes pace adjusted, which indicates a distinct lack of toughness. His lack of strength certainly plays a role here, as well, but so too does his inability to box out his man and his general lack of intensity and timing. His defense absolutely must improve if he wishes to stay relevant in scouts’ eyes during the next two years.

Ravern Johnson is an intriguing basketball player at the collegiate level, but he has a long way to go before fulfilling his potential and solidifying himself as an NBA prospect. His lack of strength, offensive versatility, and defensive efficiency are significant obstacles and it is vital that he improve in these areas. Johnson is almost certainly a four-year collegian, but if he can continue to improve on both sides of the ball, scouts will notice.

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