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Britton Johnsen: The ex-Ute who dunked over LeBron

Murray High grad was an NBA journeyman; now he gives back to those who are less fortunate.

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"When you get back home, you’re not looking at things the same way," he said.

The foundation gives him perspective. His work with the Jazz’s pregame and postgame shows reconnects him to people from his NBA past. And coaching, including this week’s Johnsen & Johnsen camp with his older brother, Jeff, makes him think about his family’s future. Houston, who’s 9, "dreams of playing in the NBA," Lindsey Johnsen said.

At a glance

About the series

What if you could play one year at the highest level of a sport? How would you view that experience and how would you spend the rest of your life? Utah high school graduates Fui Vakapuna, Zach Sorensen, Brad Sutterfield and Britton Johnsen each realized a lifelong dream, and then his opportunity was gone. These are their stories. To read about their stories, visit sltrib.com/sports

About Britton Johnsen

O Age » 35. Prep » Murray. College » Utah.

NBA » Orlando, 20 games (2003-04); Indiana, six games (2004-05).

Family » Wife, Lindsey; son, Houston (9); daughters Scarlett (6) and Goldie (2).

Jobs » Development officer, Cause for Hope foundation; radio analyst, Jazz; private basketball coach.

Notable » Johnsen’s second stint with the Orlando Magic came when he replaced Desmond Penigar, the only former Utah State player of the past 40 years to have appeared in the NBA.

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So did her husband, and he got there.

Twin towers?

The 6-foot-10 Britton Johnsen is often mistaken for former NBA player Shawn Bradley, 7-6. Rather than protest, he usually signs autographs, poses for photos and engages in conversation as Bradley, a good friend of Johnsen’s. By extension, that connects the 6-2 Brandon Johnsen — Britton’s twin brother and Murray High teammate — to Bradley, who’s 16 inches taller.

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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