San Antonio Spurs Draft

Justin Lewis Can Be Another Keldon Johnson-Type Steal

Justin Lewis
Justin Lewis / John Fisher/GettyImages
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San Antonio Spurs
Justin Lewis / Tom Pennington/GettyImages

Justin Lewis could be another Keldon Johnson

Speaking of Keldon Johnson, it's hard to watch Justin Lewis and not see a little of KJ in his game, especially on the offensive end. When Lewis catches the ball and makes a move to the hoop, he barrels down the lane with some of the same reckless abandon that we saw more frequently from the Spurs' third-year forward earlier on in his career.

The main difference between the two is that Lewis seemingly has a touch more control over his large frame than Keldon did coming out of college. He's already very adept at absorbing contact and finishing on the fly. That's pretty impressive considering there are just two players on the Spurs' current roster that are listed as heavier than Lewis and both of them play at center.

Continuing with the Keldon Johnson parallels, Lewis is becoming an increasingly reliable shooter from outside, knocking down threes at nearly a 35% clip for the Golden Eagles in 2021-22. While Keldon shot a similar percentage (38.1%) in his freshman season at Kentucky, Lewis did it on two more attempts per game.

Where Justin Lewis needs work

Even as he improves as a shooter, one of the biggest concerns with Justin's offensive game remains his shooting consistency. With him being Marquette's leading scorer, opposing teams threw a lot of different looks at him, and it's safe to say he handled some defenses better than others.

The good news is the progression is already there for him percentage-wise, as he increased his efficiency from his first college year to his second while being asked to carry a much heavier offensive load.

Possibly the best news for Lewis is that in the event he ends up in San Antonio, he would be able to work with one of the most renowned shooting coaches in the NBA in Chip Engelland. Many around the league know him as a guru who's been able to successfully tweak the shot forms of countless players he's worked with.

Justin has already shown he's comfortable shooting from mid-range, and while he's not a dead-eye shooter from in-between, he's solid enough that perhaps there's another level to be unlocked by working with Chip.

Defensively, Lewis has natural tools that can help him grow even more as a two-way threat, which I'll examine after the jump.

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