Since Brad Miller‘s departure in 2009, no player has donned the No. 52 for the Sacramento Kings.
We learned earlier this summer that James Johnson would be taking the number in honor of the former Kings’ center. Johnson played with Miller in Chicago and describes the recent retiree as a positive influence during his formative rookie year.
“He was my vet,” said Johnson of Miller and their time with the Bulls. “I really looked up to Brad. He helped out a lot, taught me a lot. And I realized nobody had wore the number since he had been here. Just decided to take it from him and do it right.”
Johnson asked Miller for his blessing to wear 52. However, the 25-year-old forward hasn’t asked the former Kings big man, an avid outdoorsman, to take him hunting yet.
“He always sends me pictures,” said Johnson with a smile. “I heard he just got a 7-foot bear just the other day. So, I don’t know if I’m going that extreme. I don’t if I’m that extreme yet – maybe a couple ducks or squirrels (first).”
Watch the video below for more of Johnson’s take on his old teammate from Kings media day.