The Phoenix Suns have been searching for a big man to round out their front court for weeks.
Although he certainly isn’t anybody’s ideal candidate, they appear to have done that Monday afternoon as they signed 6-foot-11, 250-pound Dwayne Jones, according to a press release.
Jones is a familiar face around US Airways Center, as he signed with the Suns on April 5 and finished the 2009-10 season in Phoenix.
The 27-year-old forward was part of the trade with Toronto that brought Hedo Turkoglu to Phoenix, but the Raptors chose not to keep Jones around.
The former St. Joseph’s product originally captured the Suns’ attention because of his work in the D-League, as he led the Austin Toros in rebounding (16.0 per game) through 48 games in 2009-10, while averaging an impressive 17.6 points per contest.
He was nothing more than a decent practice player in Phoenix, appearing in two regular season games and two playoff games, but with the Suns hurting for a rebounder the move doesn’t come as a huge surprise.
As his D-League numbers suggest, he knows how to attack the glass, which figures to be the Suns’ biggest weakness heading into the 2010-11 season.
According to a recent tweet from The Arizona Republic’s Paul Coro, Jones signed a one-year, minimum-salary deal with small guarantees, meaning that he will indeed be suiting up in purple and orange past the preseason.
The move now brings the Suns’ roster to 14, a number they have rarely reached in prior years due to luxury tax issues. The signing shows Phoenix truly is worried about rebounding the basketball next season, although Jones won’t even see enough time to help the Suns’ rebounding woes.
But it can never hurt to have another big body around, and the options really weren’t there for the Suns. So all in all, bringing Dwayne Jones back to Phoenix isn’t necessarily bad, but don’t expect him to make a difference in 2010-11.
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