ATLANTA (AP) - As a 27-year-old rookie, Ivan Johnson knows he must take advantage of this late chance to make a good first impression in the NBA. He says "a lot of hard work and a lot of hard times" led him to the Hawks.
Johnson spent last season with Erie of the NBA D-League after he played professionally in China, South Korea and Puerto Rico.
He was released from his scholarship at Oregon in 2006 after being benched for what was called improper displays of attitude. He finished at Cal State San Bernardino in 2007. Then anger-related incidents earned him a ban from the Korean Basketball League.
There have been no problems in Atlanta. Johnson has become a key backup and favorite with fans who Monday night chanted "I-van Johnson! I-van Johnson!"