UTEP Standout John Bohannon Finds Success in NBA G-League
At 30 years old, former Miner John Bohannon is finding his stride in the NBA G-League with the Maine Celtics. Since graduating from UTEP in 2014, Bohannon has put together quite a professional basketball career, both in the U.S. and overseas.
The Houston native has appeared in 14 games for the Celtics in the G-League, averaging 6.2 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.4 assists. He's coming off a 10-point, eight-rebound and three-block performance in a 122-113 win over the College Park Skyhawks (Denver) on Thursday.
To think, this might have never happened if Bohannon decided against returning to the Maine Celtics.
"I was probably not going to come back [to the G-League]," said Bohannon. "Maine called me and I thought it might be the time. On this team, we had six-seven call-ups. It's been an opportunity for everyone in the G-League. More call-ups this year than any year."
Due to players testing positive for COVID-19, G-League players have been used frequently on NBA rosters this season. Unlike other younger players in the league, Bohannon's journey back to the G-League is unique in itself. Here's a look at his career year by year:
- 2014-15: Birmingham Squadron (G-League) - 49 games (9 ppg/8.3 rpg/1.3 apg)
- 2015-16: Delaware Blue Coats (G-League) - 25 games (7.9 ppg/7.2 rpg/ 2.8 apg)
- 2016-18: Overseas: Bahrain, Lebanon, Dominican Republic
- 2018-19: Maine Celtics (G-League) - 42 games (7.8 ppg/9.0 rpg/3.3 apg)
- 2019-20: Maine Celtics (G-League) - 27 games (5.7 ppg/6.8 rpg/1.9 apg)
- 2020-21: Eisbaran (Germany) - 5.4 ppg/6.6 rpg/1.8 apg)
"I've been to a lot of countries in between [G-League stints]," said Bohannon. "My first year, I did the G-League. I did it for half a year in the second season. Then I went to Lebanon, Hong Kong, Dubai. I came back three years ago. They like me up here in Maine and I've learned to like lobster rolls."
Then in November of 2021, Bohannon joined the Jordanian National Team. He is striving to achieve a personal dream—playing in the Olympics.
"I played for the Jordan national team in the Asia world qualifier and the Olympics," Bohannon said. "I am a dual citizen there. That's another basketball dream of mine, playing in the Olympics. So I took it... We went 1-1 and lost a game we shouldn't have lost to Saudi Arabia. I think we play Lebanon next. We still have a chance to qualify and keep trying to get better."
Bohannon still has hopes that he can one day get the call up to the Boston Celtics and fulfill his other dream of playing in the NBA.
"Playing professionally is the dream," he said. "You always dream of playing in the NBA growing up. You can say it's still a dream for sure."
At UTEP, Bohannon racked up 1,204 total points, 825 rebounds and 163 blocks. He's second in program history for blocks and field goal percentage (.569). He had 20 double-doubles at UTEP, which is the fifth-most in school history.
He and former UTEP guard Anthony Tarke are the only two former Miners in the NBA G-League this year.
See our full conversation with John Bohannon after practice from earlier this week: