Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sport
Was it just a one game mirage, or has Elijah turned the corner?
On Monday night, Elijah Johnson exploded for a career high 39 points, making 7 of his 12 twos, 6 of his 10 threes, and all 7 of his free throws. It was a huge statement from the Senior guard that he has what it takes to help lead Kansas to a national championship, but was it a one game abberation? Or has Johnson, who has been seemingly able to get to the rim at will lately, found his shooting touch inside?
Below is a look at Johnson's 5 game running eFGs since the start of the Big 12 season (i.e. 5 will be games 1-5, 6 will be 2-6, etc.)
Elijah has been horrible most of the conference season. That is not up for debate. However, there have been some observable improvements: within the last handful of games he has started to get to the basket more, and the shooting percentages are starting to catch up. Going 6-10 from three helps with the eFG obviously, but so does consistently finishing at the rim.
Obviously if you chop those numbers up even further, Johnson keeps looking better: a 71% eFG in his last four games, a 65% eFG in his last three, 69% eFG in his last two and of course the 73% eFG explosion against Iowa State.
Johnson has taken care of the ball a lot better as well: in the last four games he has a better than 2 to 1 assist to turnover ratio. These are all small sample sizes to be sure, but over the course of his career if there's one thing that Elijah Johnson has shown it's that if you think you have him pegged, you'll be proven wrong shortly. Kansas has shown that they can win games with a bad Elijah Johnson, but with a great or simply good Elijah Johnson they are serious contenders for a national title.