Raptors trade first-round pick for Bulls' Johnson

RYAN WOLSTAT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:33 PM ET

CHARLOTTE — Ahead of Thursday’s NBA trade deadline, Raptors general manager Bryan Colangelo has acquired a player he has long coveted.

The Raptors have traded the first-round pick they acquired from Miami in the Chris Bosh sign-and-trade (expected to be in the 25-30 range) for James Johnson, the 16th pick of the 2009 draft.

The Raptors were extremely high on the 6-foot-9, 245 pound standout athlete, but wisely settled on DeMar DeRozan with the ninth pick back in 2009.

“James Johnson is a strong, athletic and versatile small forward that we have had our eye on dating back to the 2009 NBA Draft,” Colangelo said in a release.

DeRozan and rookie Ed Davis have played against the Wake Forest product and said he is a solid player.

“I always liked his game, he’ll fit in well,” DeRozan said of Johnson, who turned 24 on Sunday.

“You never know it could work out great for him and be a great pickup for us. You hope so.”

Johnson has only averaged 3.8 points ad 1.9 rebounds in 11.3 minutes but has solid per-minute numbers, though his high foul rate is a concern.

In eight recent games in the D-League, Johnson averaged 19.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 2.5 blocks in 32.1 minutes, showing off his varied skill-set.

Johnson will be in uniform for the Raptors against his former club on Wednesday, if all terms of the trade are completed before tipoff.


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