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NBA Draft 2022: An introduction to Wizards rookie Johnny Davis

The tenth pick out of Wisconsin is ready to contribute at the NBA level.

2022 NBA Draft
Johnny Davis talks through a headset shortly after being selected by the Washington Wizards with the tenth overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft.
Photo by Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images

In Thursday’s NBA Draft, the Washington Wizards selected Johnny Davis, a guard out of Wisconsin, with the tenth overall pick.

In his sophomore season with the Badgers, Davis averaged 19.7 points on 42.7 percent FG% along with 8.2 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game. Davis started in all 31 of Wisconsin’s games en route to a second-round exit at the hands of Iowa State in the NCAA Tournament.

Davis’ sophomore year statistics were a massive step up from his freshman numbers, as he more than doubled his scoring and rebounding output while taking a more active, leading role with the Badgers.

The 20-year-old guard has a rich history with basketball. His father, Mark Davis, was selected in the fourth round of the 1985 NBA Draft and played one season with the Milwaukee Bucks and Phoenix Suns before taking his talents overseas.

Mark became an All-Star in the Spanish league before eventually retiring from basketball in 1999. A few years later he would return to the states and have two sons — Johnny and his twin brother Jordan — both of whom would star at La Crosse Central High School in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

Johnny and Jordan played together on the La Crosse Central varsity basketball team. Jordan was a solid varsity player throughout his high school career, but Johnny was a bona fide superstar.

Johnny was twice named La Crosse Tribune player of the year at La Crosse Central and in his senior season, he was named Wisconsin Mr. Basketball after averaging 27.4 points and 9.2 rebounds per game. Johnny would graduate as La Crosse Central’s all-time leading scorer.

As a senior Johnny was not only the best basketball player in Wisconsin but also among the contenders for Wisconsin’s best quarterback. Johnny won the Dave Krieg award as Wisconsin’s most outstanding senior quarterback and was named Large Schools First Team All-State.

Despite receiving accolades in both sports, Johnny narrowed his focus to basketball, as he earned a basketball scholarship to the University of Wisconsin. Both he and Jordan came off the bench for Wisconsin during their freshman seasons, but by year two, Johnny had blossomed into the team’s leader and star player.

As a sophomore, Johnny led the Badgers in points, rebounds and steals per game and filled up his trophy case with national recognition and accolades. Davis was named the Big Ten player of the year and a consensus first-team All-American while also taking home the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award.

With mock drafts already projecting him as a lottery pick, on March 31 Davis declared for the 2022 NBA Draft.

After hearing his name called on draft night, Davis, dressed in a sharp salmon-colored suit, made sure to dap up his twin brother Jordan before walking up on the stage to shake Commissioner Adam Silver’s hand.

In his post-draft interview, Davis discussed the effort-centric mindset that he aims to bring to the nation’s capital.

“You can never control if the ball goes in the basket or not,” he said. “I think you can always control your effort and intensity.”

Davis has a bright future in the NBA, and Wizards fans are lucky they will have a front-row seat to watch this young man’s development as a professional basketball player.

This fall, expect an effortless scorer and humble personality to grace the floor at Capital One Arena.