San Antonio Spurs: Top 25 players in franchise history

By Rob Wolkenbrod
LOS ANGELES - FEBRUARY 3: (Left to Right) Bruce Bowen
LOS ANGELES - FEBRUARY 3: (Left to Right) Bruce Bowen /
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NEW YORK, UNITED STATES: San Antonio Spurs player Avery Johnson (L) drives against New York Knicks player Chris Childs during game five of the NBA Finals 25 June, 1999 at New York’s Madison Square Garden. The Spurs won the game 78-77 and the series 4-1. (ELECTRONIC IMAGE) AFP PHOTO Jeff HAYNES (Photo credit should read JEFF HAYNES/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, UNITED STATES: San Antonio Spurs player Avery Johnson (L) drives against New York Knicks player Chris Childs during game five of the NBA Finals 25 June, 1999 at New York’s Madison Square Garden. The Spurs won the game 78-77 and the series 4-1. (ELECTRONIC IMAGE) AFP PHOTO Jeff HAYNES (Photo credit should read JEFF HAYNES/AFP/Getty Images) /

9. Avery Johnson

Avery Johnson was the San Antonio Spurs’ point guard of the 1990’s. He had three stints with the organization in this decade, leaving for just one year at a time. However, in each stop in San Antonio, Johnson was successful.

The first two seasons, which were split up, had Johnson as the backup point guard. In the 1991-92 season, he had 6.8 points and 5.0 assists in 20 games played, before the organization waived him. He returned as a free agent in the 1992-93 season, however, and found his groove.

Johnson had 8.7 points and 7.5 assists, while starting 49 of 75 games. It was the biggest role he ever had in San Antonio, until the Golden State Warriors scooped him up in the following year’s free agency.

However, by 1994-95, Johnson was back and stuck around for the rest of the decade. It’s what established him as a top Spur.

From 1994-00, Johnson never had less than 6.0 assists per game (two seasons were above 8.0), and became a double-digit scorer. It was as the lead guard on the great Spurs teams of the late 1990’s, including the ones with David Robinson and Tim Duncan. They were an easy way for Johnson to pad his assists numbers after 1997.

Johnson provided a steady defensive presence, too. He topped out at 3.5 Defense Win Shares in 1995-96 and 3.2 in 1997-98. The number dipped to 2.2 in 1998-99, but also came in the title-winning year.

The New Orleans, LA native will always be one of the Spurs’ best point guards of all time. He’ll only be topped by one player that came after him.

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