The San Antonio Spurs season has been mired in losses this season. A fact that has worn on many fans who are used to dominating or at the very least competing at a high level, recognized as one of the premier teams in the league on a yearly basis. In the desperation to return to the mountaintop, team support has been morphed into GM for a day with many wanting to trade Keldon Johnson for anything to boost the team's competitiveness but that may be an ill-advised decision.
The former Kentucky forward brings the same energy to games every night. The drive KJ plays with consistently is exactly what fans want from the rest of the team. There is a benefit to having a guy who will give 100% whenever called upon. The desire to win drives him. The need to improve is clear. The morale of the team is important to him, making him an important locker room guy. There are many reasons for San Antonio to keep Johnson around.
Keldon Johnson makes up for many of the Spurs' deficiencies and he shouldn't have to
The graphic above is informative because, understanding Keldon's game, Spurs fans know he is not a player who takes an extended amount of time to make a decision with the basketball. When he catches the ball, he will either swing it, shoot it, or drive it. He will not stand there and dribble the air out of the ball or just hold it, waiting for perfection. He makes things happen. That means he is receiving the ball when San Antonio needs to be bailed out, and he does that as well as anyone else.
Devin Vassell is the man of the year with his new contract extension. His potential is obvious, but right now, his game can be frustrating. He disappears from the offense too much and takes too many long, contested shots. Keldon does what Devin should be doing. Attack. Put pressure on the defense. You will get yourself to the line, which will help your shooting rhythm. Players will back off you, knowing you will drive past them.
Right now, opponents play Vassell close because they know he wants to elevate and shoot the ball over them. That is not a sustainable path to victory. So, instead of suggesting the team move off the one guy, besides Victor Wembanyama, who fights for every basket like his life depends on it, maybe fans should pump the brakes and hope to hold on to a guy who loves being a San Antonio Spurs player and shows it every time he takes the floor.