The SKYCITY New Zealand Breakers have completed their full-time playing roster today with the signing of American point guard Kerron Johnson (subject to ANBL approval).
The 22-year-old is fresh out of Belmont University and comes highly recommended through the Breakers scouting system, with a ringing endorsement from Belmont head coach Rick Byrd.
Breakers head coach Dean Vickerman is delighted with the quality of player the club has secured:
"Kerron was identified by our USA scout Jonathan Givony very early in the recruitment process. Our selection committee then selected Kerron as the number one candidate.
At the Breakers all new players have to possess a high talent level, but more importantly have to fit the clubs value system. We believe Kerron possess the required qualities to be a successful SKYCITY Breaker.”
Johnson enjoyed an extremely successful college career at Belmont where he won his conference tournament in 2011, 2012 and 2013, advancing Belmont to the NCAA Tournament all three years.
In both 2012 and 2013 Kerron was named to the All Conference 1st Team and won All Conference Tournament MVP ahead of fellow Belmont guard Ian Clarke (NBA Summer League MVP) and Isaiah Canaan, who both recently signed NBA contracts with the Utah Jazz and Houston Rockets respectively.
Johnson is looking forward to hooking up with his new club in late August:
“My agent told me about a great opportunity that would allow me to grow and start my career in a quality organisation. The Breakers are dedicated to winning and they do what’s best for the development of their players.
“They also enjoy doing things for their community which is something you can’t find in every club.”
Johnson says fans can expect an uptempo style of game when the ball is in his hands:
“The fast pace type of basketball that the fans are used to seeing fits my skill set very well. I am at my best when the pace is up and down, and in the open court.
I am a fearless competitor that plays with fire and emotion and I think the fans will see and feel that when they watch me play. I'm dedicated to continuing the championship dynasty that has been started.”
Vickerman is not the only coach excited about Johnson’s talent.
"Belmont head coach Rick Byrd - who has coached the Belmont Bruins for 27 seasons, ranked Kerron in his top three most competitive players he has ever coached, and that is some endorsement.
"Kerron is a lefty - which the NBL has not seen a lot of in recent years, and one of his greatest strengths is his ability to attack the rim and make great decisions.
In 2013 he averaged close to seven free throw attempts per game, and shot 78 per cent from the line whilst dishing out five assists per game. The words ‘Winner, Competitor and High Character’ have been used consistently to describe Kerron Johnson from all references," he said.
Kerron Johnson will arrive in Auckland on 29 August along with fellow import Darnell Lazare. SKYCITY Breakers fans across New Zealand will get a chance to see the new Breakers line-up in September with pre-season games soon to be announced.
See below college highlights from Kerron Johnson: