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Former Arizona star Stanley Johnson released by Spurs

Some playoff contender will pick him up

arizona-wildcats-stanley-johnson-san-antonio-spurs-nba-free-agent-2023-playoffs Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Stanley Johnson showed last season that he can make an impact for a team trying to reach the playoffs, even if goal wasn’t achieved. Now he may get a second chance to show his value to a postseason contender.

The former Arizona Wildcats wing has been released by the San Antonio Spurs, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, where he had played 30 games this season after signing in December.

The 6-foot-6 Johnson, 26, averaged 5.8 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 15.6 minutes per game for the Spurs, shooting 53.3 percent overall and a career-high 45 percent from 3-point range. San Antonio is 14-43 and more focused on tanking for a higher draft pick than competing for a playoff spot, though, and Johnson wasn’t considered part of those future plans.

By getting released, Johnson can sign with any team that might need a versatile wing off the bench. Last season he showed his mettle with the Los Angeles Lakers, starting 27 games and scoring in double-figures 13 times, but LA finished one game out of the play-in round in the Western Conference.

A first-round pick of the Detroit Pistons in 2015, Johnson has played for five NBA teams in eight seasons. He played the 2014-15 season at Arizona, averaging 13.8 points and 6.5 rebounds on a squad that reached the Elite Eight.