Archive for the ‘ Phoenix Suns Blog ’ Category

Phoenix Suns waive Bryce Cotton and Cory Jefferson

The Phoenix Suns have waived guard Bryce Cotton and forward Cory Jefferson.

Cotton originally signed with the Suns on Nov. 25. The second-year NBA player saw action in three games, totaling four points and three assists in 33 minutes.

Jefferson signed with the Suns prior to training camp on Sept. 16. He appeared in six games with Phoenix in his second NBA season, posting totals of 12 points and 10 rebounds in 28 minutes.

The Suns’ roster now stands at 13 players.

Kings score 142 points on Suns

Coach George Karl moved into a tie for fifth on the NBA wins list with 1,155 when DeMarcus Cousins had 32 points and nine rebounds Saturday to lead the Sacramento Kings to a 142-119 victory over the Phoenix Suns, who lost their eighth in a row.

Karl matched Phil Jackson with the milestone win. The 63-year-old Karl is 1,155-795 in 27 seasons…

Darren Collison had 21 points and six assists and Marco Belinelli had 19 points for the Kings. Rudy Gay added 16 points and Rajon Rondo had 15 points and 15 assists.

– Associated Press

The Phoenix Suns today announced changes to their coaching staff, promoting assistant coaches Nate Bjorkgren and Earl Watson to the front of the bench on Head Coach Jeff Hornacek’s staff. The Suns also announced Jerry Sichting and Mike Longabardi have been relieved of their duties as assistant coaches.

“It is never easy to make changes to a coaching staff in the middle of a season but we feel Earl and Nate are ready to take the next steps in their careers and provide some creative ideas to our group,” said General Manager Ryan McDonough. “We thank Mike and Jerry for their contributions. They are both good coaches who made significant contributions to our team winning 87 games over the previous two seasons.”

Bjorkgren (pronounced BEE-ork-Gren) is in his first season as an assistant coach with the Suns and second season overall with the organization as in 2014-15 he served as head coach of the Bakersfield Jam, the team’s NBA D-League affiliate. An experienced head coach in the D-League, Bjorkgren amassed a 126-74 (.630) record in four seasons, going 34-16 in his one season with the Jam, leading the Iowa Energy to the Central Division title in 2013-14 and the Santa Cruz Warriors to the 2012-13 D-League Finals. Before becoming the head coach of the Dakota Wizards in 2011-12, Bjorkgren spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the Energy from 2007-11.

Watson is in his first season with the Suns after working last season as an assistant coach for the Austin Spurs of the D-League. Watson became a coach following a 13-year NBA career as a player in which he appeared in 878 career games from 2001-2014. Watson averaged 6.4 points, 4.4 assists and 1.0 steals for his career, posting highs of 10.7 points and 6.8 assists in 78 games (73 starts) with Seattle in 2007-08. Watson played for three NBA Coach of the Year Award winners throughout his 13-year career (Hubie Brown, George Karl, Scott Brooks), as well as Hall of Famer Jerry Sloan. During Watson’s three seasons with the Jazz from 2010-13, Hornacek served first as shooting coach then as an assistant coach for the team.

Sichting and Longabardi both joined the Suns as assistant coaches prior to the 2013-14 season.

Phoenix Suns guard Eric Bledsoe has sustained a torn meniscus in his left knee. The injury occurred during last night’s game against Philadelphia and a subsequent MRI revealed the tear.

Bledsoe will undergo surgery Tuesday, December 29. The surgery will be performed by team orthopedic surgeon Dr. Tom Carter.

The sixth-year guard is averaging career-highs of 20.4 points, 6.1 assists and 2.0 steals, in addition to 4.0 rebounds and 34.2 minutes in 31 games this season, his third with the Suns.

markieff morris suspension

The Phoenix Suns have suspended forward Markieff Morris for two games for conduct detrimental to the team. Morris will serve the suspension in the Suns’ next two games, Dec. 26 vs. Philadelphia and Dec. 28 vs. Cleveland.

According to the Arizona Republic, here’s what happened:

“In one of their more advantageous scenarios of the season, the Suns posted another dreadful loss with play so frightful and no signs of stopping. The bow on Wednesday night’s stocking of coal came when Markieff Morris added to a season of distraction by harkening back memories of Robert Horry’s towel toss at Danny Ainge by tossing a towel toward coach Jeff Hornacek in Wednesday’s fourth quarter.

The Suns lost 104-96 at Talking Stick Resort Arena to a Denver team playing a night after losing at home to the last-place Los Angeles Lakers and was missing five players (two starters) with no backup point guard available.”

Suns sign Bryce Cotton

The Phoenix Suns announced today they have signed free agent guard Bryce Cotton. The third “Call-Up” from the D-League in the NBA this season, Cotton has averaged 22.0 points on 58.7 percent shooting from the field, 61.9 percent from three-point territory and 91.3 percent from the free-throw line in four games with the Austin Spurs of the NBA Development League.

Cotton, a 6-1, 165-pound guard, played in 15 games as a rookie with the Utah Jazz last season. He averaged 5.3 points for the season and scored in double-digits in each of his final four appearances, including a career-high 21 points on April 13 against Dallas.

Undrafted in the 2014 NBA Draft, Cotton played in 34 games with the Austin Spurs in 2014-15 before joining the Jazz. Cotton was named All-NBA D-League Second Team and NBA D-League All-Rookie First Team after averaging 22.4 points (47.0 FG%, 44.3 3FG%, 90.0 FT%), 4.7 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 1.3 steals in 34 games with Austin.

A native of Tucson, Cotton was named First Team All-Class 4A in the state by The Arizona Republic in 2010 as he completed a standout career at Palo Verde High School. Cotton played collegiately at Providence College where he twice earned First Team All-Big East distinction and was named Big East Tournament MVP in 2014 after leading the Friars to the title.

Cotton will wear number 8. The Suns’ roster now stands at 15.

Dirk will see Suns honor Steve Nash

Here’s the Dallas Morning News reporting that Dirk Nowitzki will be in attendance when the Phoenix Suns honor Steve Nash for his accomplishments:

Dirk will see Suns honor Steve Nash

Nowitzki and a handful of other Mavericks’ personnel will use the day off Friday in Los Angeles to return to Phoenix, where they will watch Steve Nash be inducted into the Suns’ ring of honor.

“I’m not missing it,” Nowitzki said Wednesday. “We’re coming back Friday. It’s huge for him. He had a tremendous career and since we’re off in LA for three or four days, we’re coming back here for it. It’s a tremendous honor for him.

“What he did here and in his career was amazing.”


The Phoenix Suns have exercised their 2016-17 contract options on guard Archie Goodwin, center Alex Len and forward T.J. Warren.

These moves were expected, and aren’t a surprise.

Goodwin, who has spent each of his first two NBA seasons with the Suns, averaged career-highs of 5.6 points, 1.8 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 13.0 minutes in 41 games in 2014-15. The 29th overall pick of the 2013 NBA Draft, Goodwin averaged 14.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in the two games in which he started last season. At NBA Summer League 2015 in Las Vegas, Goodwin ranked second on the team with an average of 15.9 points as he helped the Suns reach the 2015 Summer League Championship Game. During the preseason, Goodwin averaged 5.7 points, 1.8 assists and 1.0 steals in 15.8 minutes.

Len led the Suns with 1.6 blocks per game during the preseason, also averaging 10.2 points and 6.0 rebounds. In 2014-15, he produced a breakthrough second season as he emerged as one of the league’s best shot blockers, ranking seventh in the NBA among qualified players with 2.5 blocks per 36 minutes. The fifth overall pick of the 2013 NBA Draft, Len averaged career-bests of 6.3 points, 6.6 rebounds, 1.5 blocks and 22.0 minutes in 69 games. In 44 starts last season, Len posted 6.9 points, 7.7 rebounds, 1.9 blocks and 24.2 minutes as the Suns posted a 23-21 record in those games. Len’s 1.9 blocks per game after entering the regular starting lineup on Dec. 15 ranked eighth in the NBA from that date forward.

Warren led the Suns in scoring with an average of 13.7 points during the preseason, in addition to averaging 5.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.8 steals. One of the NBA’s most efficient rookie scorers in 2014-15, he ranked seventh among rookies who played at least 600 total minutes with an average of 14.4 points per 36 minutes, the highest by a Suns rookie playing at least 600 minutes since Amar’e Stoudemire in 2002-03. Overall, the 14th pick of the 2014 NBA Draft averaged 6.1 points, 2.1 rebounds and 15.4 minutes in 40 games. Warren excelled at NBA Summer League 2015 in Las Vegas, being named to the All-NBA Summer League First Team after averaging a team-high 18.7 points on 54.0 percent shooting in seven games.

Suns waive Henry Sims

The Phoenix Suns have waived center Henry Sims.

Sims initially signed with the Suns on Sept. 16. He played in all six of the Suns’ preseason games, totaling 10 points and seven rebounds in 28 minutes.

The Suns’ roster now stands at 14 players.

Suns players get glimpse of Navy SEALs training

It’s always fun to hear about the other types of training NBA players get exposed to. Some worked out with MMA fighters. As for the Suns, here’s the Arizona Republic reporting:

The Suns got a day off of practice, but it did not feel like it for more than two hours Thursday when they got just a morsel of what Navy SEALs bite off in training.

In the name of bonding, the Suns changed up the training-camp routine after two days of two-a-day practices and turned their training over to a pair of Navy SEALs.

Dressed in camouflage pants and their Suns training shirts, 18 tall men caught double takes across campus as they went through team-building exercises across the Northern Arizona University campus.

The work began in the Wall Aquatic Center, where the private workouts were caught on video by the NAU swim team as the Suns players interlocked arms and went under lane ropes in unison. The Suns also went across fields on campus, doing push-ups, situps and carrying logs as NAU students snapped photos.

“A lot of it is team building,” said Suns Vice President of Player Relations Mark West, who helped organize the idea with the athletic training staff.

The latest on the Suns-Markieff Morris situation

Here’s the Arizona Republic reporting on Phoenix Suns forward Markieff Morris, who wanted to be traded but apparently will do his job and play as expected until that happens:

The latest on the Suns-Markieff Morris situation

Despite Eric Bledsoe’s impressive summer commitment, Tyson Chandler’s leadership and defensive addition and Brandon Knight’s stress-free re-signing, any summer shine from the Suns has been clouded by Markieff Morris’ falling-out with the franchise. That disdain could be the dominant display again Monday when Morris is the prominent figure during Suns media day in Phoenix.

Upset that his twin, Marcus, was traded to Detroit in early July without warning and just as their contract extensions began, Markieff did not get his wish to be traded this summer and will participate Monday as he pledged to do if his trade request was ignored.

After returning to Phoenix last week for a court hearing, Morris remained in town but trained at Grand Canyon University rather than with Suns teammates.

The Phoenix Suns last night announced a new marketing campaign, WeArePHX, as well as a black alternate uniform. Suns president, Jason Rowley, head coach Jeff Hornacek and Suns players Eric Bledsoe, Devin Booker, Archie Goodwin, Brandon Knight, Jon Leuer and P.J. Tucker, were joined by City of Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton for the reveal event at Canyon Suites at The Phoenician, at the base of Camelback Mountain.

The Suns also revealed their new black “PHX” alternate uniform, deemed Civic Pride, which the team says represents their pride in their home City, while harkening back to popular Suns teams of the past, including the Kevin Johnson and Charles Barkley-led Suns of the mid 90’s, the first team to wear a black Suns uniform. The sleek new design offers the team an alternate look while incorporating the Suns primary colors, purple and orange.

The Suns will wear the black alternate for the first time at the team’s home opener on October 28 at Talking Stick Resort Arena, and a total of 13 times during the 2015-16 season, a nod to Suns great Steve Nash, who will be inducted into the team’s Ring of Honor on October 30 and whose teams were among the first to wear a “PHX” jersey in the mid-2000’s.

Here’s the Arizona Republic reporting some Phoenix Suns uniform news. It’s always cool when teams roll out alternate jerseys, because in some cases the take some chances that pay off big. And then suddenly there’s something awesome worth buying. As for the report:

The Suns will be back in black next season.

On Tuesday, the Suns will reveal an alternate black uniform for the coming season, along with the “#WeArePHX” marketing campaign that already has been used in some recent franchise initiatives.

The Suns have not worn a black uniform since they donned an alternate throwback black uniform during the 2012-13 season. That uniform was designed after the 1994-95 black jerseys but this uniform will have a new style.

Video: Intro to Suns rookie Devin Booker

Get to know Phoenix Suns rookie Devin Booker a bit better:

Spurs win 2015 summer league championship

Spurs win 2015 summer league championship

Here’s the Arizona Republic reporting on the Spurs and Suns, who Monday in Las Vegas battled for the 2015 summer league championship:

The Suns’ Summer League rotation of hot scoring hands turned to rookie free agent Mike James on Monday night, but even his 32-point game was not enough to bring the league tournament’s championship trophy to Phoenix.

James scored 23 second-half points, but San Antonio overcame an early 10-point hole to down the Suns 93-90 at Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.

The Suns ended the 24-team tournament with their sloppiest game. They committed 18 turnovers and had three players – T.J. Warren, Archie Goodwin and Devin Booker – foul out as the Summer League’s first female head coach, Becky Hammon, led the Spurs (6-1) to a win with two roster players – league MVP Kyle Anderson and championship-game MVP Jonathan Simmons.

James, an explosive 6-foot-1 point guard, hit 10 of 18 shots with 3-of-6 shooting from the 3-point line and 9-for-11 free throw shooting. He also had eight rebounds, four assists, three steals and five turnovers.

Watch T.J. Warren of the Phoenix Suns do big things at summer league in Vegas:

suns sign Mirza Teletovic

The Phoenix Suns have signed forward Mirza Teletovic (pronounced MEER-za Tel-LET-O-Vich), guard/forward Sonny Weems and guard Ronnie Price.

“We have followed Mirza Teletovic’s career for a long time and we are excited to have him wear a Suns uniform,” said General Manager Ryan McDonough. “Mirza is one of the best shooting big men in the world and we think his skill set will be a great fit for our style of play.”

“Sonny Weems has been one of the best players outside of the NBA over the past few years,” added McDonough. “We’ve seen him dominate high-level competition at both ends of the floor and we think his versatility and experience help solidify our wing rotation.”

“The Suns are pleased to welcome Ronnie Price and his family back to Phoenix,” said President of Basketball Operations Lon Babby. “As we know, Ronnie is the consummate professional and a great teammate.”

The 6-9, 242-pound Teletovic is a three-year NBA veteran who owns career averages of 7.0 points and 3.4 rebounds in 165 career games. Teletovic has played all three NBA seasons with the Brooklyn Nets and had his best statistical campaign in 2014-15 when he averaged a career-high 8.5 points, a career-best 4.9 rebounds and a career-high 1.2 assists in 40 games before being diagnosed with bilateral pulmonary embolous (multiple blood clots in the lungs) on Jan. 23. He was cleared to resume all basketball-related activities on April 17.

The native of Bosnia is a career 40.1 percent shooter from the floor, including 36.2 percent from three-point range, whose 7.0-point career average has come on 6.3 field goal attempts per game.

Prior to joining the Nets on July 16, 2012, Teletovic played six of his 10 professional seasons overseas with Caja Laboral Baskonia (2006-12) of the Spanish ACB League. With Caja Laboral Baskonia, he won the 2007-08 and 2009-10 Spanish National Championship and averaged 12.4 points (45.1 FG%, 40.5 3FG%), 4.3 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.0 blocks in 120 Euroleague games.

Weems, a native of West Memphis, Ark., has been a standout the past three seasons with CSKA Moscow of the Euroleague and Russia’s top national league, the VTB United League. An All-Euroleague First Team selection in 2013-14, Weems averaged 13.0 points (44.6 FG%, 36.9 3FG%, 78.7 FT%), 3.4 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 0.9 steals and 28.1 minutes in 83 Euroleague games over his three seasons with CSKA. Weems also played 83 VTB United League games with CSKA, averaging 11.2 points (45.7 FG%, 41.4 3FG%, 71.1 FT%), 2.9 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 0.8 steals in 24.8 minutes.

The athletic 6-6, 205-pound wing is a three-year NBA veteran who last played with the Toronto Raptors during the 2010-11 season when he averaged a career-high 9.2 points on 44.4 percent shooting in 59 games (28 starts). The 29-year-old also played with the Raptors in 2009-10 after spending his rookie season with the Denver Nuggets in 2008-09. For his NBA career, Weems has averaged 7.7 points on 47.4 percent shooting, 2.5 rebounds and 20.3 minutes in 140 games (47 starts).

A second-round selection (39th overall) by the Chicago Bulls in the 2008 NBA Draft, Weems earned All-SEC First Team honors as a senior at the University of Arkansas in 2007-08 after averaging a team-best 15.0 points for the Razorbacks.

The 6-2, 190-pound Price is a 10-year NBA veteran who owns career averages of 3.6 points, 1.7 assists and 1.2 rebounds in 468 games. The 32-year-old guard previously signed with the Suns on Dec. 13, 2011 and averaged 3.6 points, 1.9 assists and 1.6 rebounds in 36 games. In total, he has played for six NBA teams, the Sacramento Kings (2005-07), Utah Jazz (2007-11), Suns (2011-12), Portland Trail Blazers (2012-13), Orlando Magic (2013-14) and most recently with the Los Angeles Lakers (2014-15). Price’s best statistical season came in 2014-15 with the Lakers when he averaged a career-high 5.1 points, career-best 3.8 assists and a career-high tying 1.6 rebounds in 43 games.

Undrafted out of college, Price was a four-year performer at Utah Valley State College (now Utah Valley University) and the first player to enter the NBA directly from that school, the second in the league overall (Travis Hansen, 2003-04).

The Suns have waived guard Jerel McNeal. McNeal played in six games with the Suns in 2014-15, totaling nine points in 36 minutes after initially signing with the team on April 1.

Suns re-sign Brandon Knight to big contract

The Phoenix Suns have re-signed guard Brandon Knight to a multi-year contract, the team announced today.

According to multiple reports from earlier in July, it is a five-year, $70 million deal.

“We are delighted to have reached a multi-year agreement with Brandon,” said President of Basketball Operations Lon Babby. “He will be an integral member of our team on the court and will enhance our culture with his leadership and professionalism.”

Knight appeared in 63 games last season, including 11 games with the Suns after being acquired from the Milwaukee Bucks on Feb. 19, posting 17.0 points per game with his shooting marks of 42.2 percent from the field, 38.9 percent from three-point range and 87.4 percent from the free-throw line each representing career bests. He also averaged career-highs of 5.2 assists, 3.9 rebounds and 1.4 steals. At just 23 years of age, Knight was the second-youngest qualified player in the NBA to average at least 15 points and five assists in 2014-15 with only Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving being younger.

Finishing in the top-30 on the league leaderboard in scoring average, assists per game, steals per game, three-point percentage and free-throw percentage, Knight joined Golden State’s Stephen Curry, the Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul and Irving as the only four players to rank in the top-30 in each category in 2014-15. Knight scored 20-plus points on 25 occasions last season, including a season-high 34 points vs. Charlotte on Dec. 23 while with Milwaukee and 28 points in a Suns win at Orlando on March 4.

A four-year NBA veteran, the 6-3 guard with a 6-7 wingspan holds career averages of 15.2 points (41.7 FG%, 36.5 3FG%, 79.6 FT%), 4.5 assists, 3.5 rebounds, 1.0 steals and 32.4 minutes in 276 games (265 starts) with Detroit (2011-13), Milwaukee (2013-15) and the Suns. Knight earned 2011-12 NBA All-Rookie First Team honors following his first season with the Pistons and twice played in the Rising Stars Challenge at NBA All-Star Weekend in 2012 and 2013.

Knight was originally selected with eighth overall pick of the 2011 NBA Draft by Detroit following one season at the University of Kentucky in 2010-11. While at Kentucky, the South Florida native earned All-SEC Second Team honors after setting school freshman records in scoring and three-point field goals made. Knight was named the NCAA East Region Most Outstanding Player after leading the Wildcats to the Final Four for the first time since 1998, ending the longest Final Four drought in the prestigious program’s history.

The Suns’ roster stands at 13

Suns sign first round draft pick Devin Booker

The Phoenix Suns have signed first-round pick Devin Booker, the 13th overall selection of the 2015 NBA Draft.

All first round draft picks are guaranteed to receive a contract. So, this signing is standard and was expected.

Booker has made his Suns debut as a member of Phoenix’s entry at NBA Summer League 2015 in Las Vegas where he has averaged 8.0 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1.5 steals through two games. Booker and the Suns return to action tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. (Phoenix time) against the Utah Jazz with the game to be televised on NBA TV.

Booker, widely considered to be the best three-point shooter in this year’s draft, earned Southeastern Conference (SEC) Sixth Man of the Year, Second Team All-SEC and All-SEC Freshman Team honors following his one season at Kentucky in 2014-15. The 6-6, 206-pound marksman averaged 10.0 points for the Wildcats and displayed his fluid shooting stroke, connecting on 47.0 percent of his field goals, 41.1 percent of his three-pointers and 82.8 percent of his free throws.

A mature 18-year-old possessing a high basketball IQ, Booker helped the Wildcats to a 38-1 record this past season with the 38 wins tying for the most in NCAA history as Kentucky also won the SEC regular-season and tournament titles on its way to becoming the first undefeated team to reach the Final Four since UNLV in 1991. Booker ranked second on the Wildcats with 20 double-digit scoring games and led the conference by earning SEC Freshman of the Week honors on five occasions.

Booker, a native of Grand Rapids, Mich., was named a 2014 McDonald’s All-American after averaging 30.9 points as a senior at Moss Point High School in Moss Point, Miss. Booker’s father, Melvin, had a distinguished collegiate career at the University of Missouri before playing in 32 NBA games with the Houston Rockets, Denver Nuggets and Golden State Warriors over the 1995-96 and 1996-97 seasons followed by several seasons playing professionally in Italy, Turkey and Russia.

Suns sign Tyson Chandler

Suns sign Tyson Chandler

The Phoenix Suns yesterday signed Tyson Chandler, one of the league’s premier defensive post players and owner of the second-highest field goal percentage in NBA history, to a multiyear contract.

“Tyson Chandler will be a leader on and off the court,” said President of Basketball Operations Lon Babby. “His physical stature is matched by his immense presence as an individual of high character who is highly respected by the NBA community. It is an honor to welcome this NBA Champion and All-Star to Phoenix.”

The 7-1, 240-pound center is a 14-year NBA veteran whose extensive resume is highlighted by the 2011-12 NBA Defensive Player of the Year award, a 2013 All-Star appearance, three NBA All-Defensive team selections, 2011-12 All-NBA Third Team recognition, an NBA Championship as a member of the 2011 Dallas Mavericks and a Gold Medal representing Team USA at the 2012 London Olympic Games. With a career field goal percentage of 59.1 percent, Chandler also possesses the second-highest field goal percentage in NBA history among those with at least 2,000 makes, trailing only Hall of Famer Artis Gilmore.

In 75 games with Dallas last season, Chandler averaged a double-double with 10.3 points on 66.6 percent shooting and 11.5 rebounds, in addition to 1.2 blocks. With his third season averaging a double-double while shooting at least 60 percent from the field, Chandler matched the legendary Wilt Chamberlain and joined Gilmore as the only players in league history to accomplish this as least three times in their careers. In four games against the Suns in 2014-15, Chandler excelled with three double-doubles while averaging 14.0 points (61.3 percent from the field, 78.2 percent from the free-throw line) and 16.5 rebounds.

For his career, Chandler holds averages of 8.8 points, 9.3 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 920 games with the Chicago Bulls (2001-06), New Orleans Hornets (2006-09), Charlotte Bobcats (2009-10), Mavericks (2010-11, 2014-15) and New York Knicks (2011-14). He has posted 253 career double-doubles with 405 games scoring in double figures, including 34 with 20-plus points, and 412 games with double-digit rebounds, including 26 with 20-plus boards.

The second overall selection of the 2001 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Clippers, Chandler was traded to the Bulls shortly after being selected. A Southern California native, Chandler was drafted out of high school after attending Dominguez in Compton, Calif., the same high school as former Suns Dennis Johnson and Cedric Ceballos.

The Arizona Republic reports the following:

Tyson Chandler comes into Phoenix with his 7-foot-3 wingspan spread wide, ready to wipe out so many of the stains of the Suns’ last season.

Beyond being a much-needed instant and undisputed leader, Chandler is a basketball fit for the jagged holes of the Suns’ on-court puzzle last season.

The Suns had the fifth-worst rebounding percentage team in the NBA. Enter the No. 5 rebounder in the league last season, when he posted the best rebounding percentage of his 14-year career.

The Suns wanted to improve their rim protection, post defense, pick-and-roll coverage and defensive communication. It is the defensive role Chandler was born to play.

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