Former lottery pick Johnson hopes he found a home with Bulls

Forward Stanley Johnson joined the Bulls with no guarantees, but he's feeling comfortable and confident after two days of training camp.

"I think I found a home for myself," he said. "I know I spoke to Billy (Donovan) a couple of times prior to officially signing the deal. But I think it's pretty easy. I'm a position of need for the team, and I was available and I wanted to be here and it kind of made a lot of sense."

Johnson said he feels comfortable with Donovan because when he was in high school, he got Donovan's best recruiting pitch to join the Florida Gators. Not only was there a home visit during the recruiting process, Donovan also coached Johnson on the U18 national team.

Johnson was named MVP of the FIBA Americas championship in 2014.

"I know he's a guy who will tell me the truth, and we have a relationship already," Johnson said. "I think they're very serious about winning games. They were very serious about taking the next step."

The 6-foot-6 Johnson ended up going to Arizona and, a year later, was the No. 8 overall draft pick by Detroit in 2015. He hasn't found much success in the NBA, with a career-high of 8.7 points in his third season with the Pistons. He played sparingly for New Orleans and Toronto the past three years.

"I've always felt like he's always had a really good feel of how to play, understanding how to play," Donovan said. "The versatility of being able to play some power forward, some small forward, being able to handle, guard multiple positions, I think that's really intriguing for us."

Alize gets active:

The Bulls added two forwards named Johnson in the weeks leading up to training camp. Alize Johnson was released by Brooklyn late in the summer and signed a two-year deal with the Bulls.

Stanley and Alize Johnson are both 25, but Alize has been in the league just three years. He was a second-round pick of Indiana out of Missouri State.

"Unbelievable motor," Billy Donovan said of Alize Johnson. "You kind of know what you're getting with him. High energy, he's going to offensive rebound. He's always in the middle of something, you know?

"If there's a loose ball, if there's a scrum, if a ball goes up, he's always involved. And he's carved out a real great niche of a guy that's got incredible stamina and endurance. He's undersized but makes up a lot of that with his heart and toughness."

DeRozan's due diligence:

Before joining the Bulls this summer, DeMar DeRozan said he spoke to both Taj Gibson and Jimmy Butler about playing in Chicago. DeRozan and Gibson were teammates for one season at USC.

"That gave me their perspective on being here, on playing here, the city," he said. "Just everything about it was always something positive."

And now that he lives here, what are his early impressions of Chicago?

"The appreciation for sports is at a higher level than what I thought," DeRozan said. "Seeing how energetic of a sports city it is ... the excitement for everything just gives a different type of feel to the city."

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