Kendall Marshall will rejoin Suns after D-League stint

The Phoenix Suns announced Friday that point guard Kendall Marshall has been recalled from the D-League’s Bakersfield Jam and will be available for the Suns on Saturday night against the Portland Trail Blazers.

Through nine games with the Jam, the rookie averaged a league-leading 7.6 assists per game, a pretty solid assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.27 and found himself atop the passing statistics with a familiar face in fellow rookie and assist machine Scott Machado, who last year with Iona was battling Marshall for the NCAA assist-leader mark.

The down-side has been Marshall’s scoring. He averaged 9.6 points per game but shot just 31 percent from the floor and 22 percent from three-point range. The 13th overall pick also averaged three rebounds and 1.2 steals per his 30 minutes a game.

Marshall’s best scoring performance came in his first game with Bakersfield, when he hit 7-of-18 shots for 21 points. He hit a rough three-game stretch in the middle of his stint where he went 6-of-25 from the floor and had just 14 total assists but recovered nicely his last four games, where Marshall averaged nine assists a game.

Tags: Kendall Marshall

  • azbballfan

    Hopefully Marshall will work out but as a lottery pick you would like to see more production from him

    it has got to be frustrating to struggle in the D-League

    With 3 point guards ahead of him, what is the future plan for Marshall?

    Come on Babby and Blanks, the suns are on that mediocrity treadmill they have been on for like 5 years now not counting obviously 2009/2010

    I think Marshall plays with the Suns until his contract is over and he leaves as a free agent

    right now it looks like 2 swings and misses in a row for our FO

    Markieff Morris is playing ok but what does that say about our FO when Kenneth Faried is having a big impact on the Nuggest and he was the 21st pick

    did the suns even work him out?

    just blow up the team already you dont get anywhere always drafting in the low lottery

    and if you pick a guy play him front office

  • R. Bourland

    Watched his Twitters since he was drafted. His mind is not on basketball, unless it is North Carolina related. His Tweets are indecipherable. The impression: immature to the nth degree.

  • Scott

    Marshall’s offensive performance may look bad to people who expect better, but you must remember this guy was starting from practically zero. In college he was getting just one point of his own for every assist he dished – so that’s 2 assists per made basket – and he’d fire off 1 three point shot like every other game. That’s not going to get it done in the NBA, obviously. He’s got to be more of a scoring threat.

    So to me, with that in mind, 31% and 22% shooting is not horrible, as he was attempting more shots, but we’d all like to see that improve. As he adjusts to the speed of the NBA, he should get a better shooting rhythm and get back to the higher percentages he had in college. It will take time and repetition.

    Another important thing Marshall is working on, aside from offensive efficiency, is when to take his shot. In the NBA he must take shots more frequently than he did in college, and that’s going to contest his natural unselfishness.

    Also, hopefully he’s working on penetrating and dishing, which he did very little of in summer league, a disappointment for such a good passer.

    That’s a lot to work on, and I wouldn’t expect him to come too far in just 9 games.

    My guess is another Suns developmental player will head to the D-League for a bit while Marshall stays with the Suns, gets re-evaluated by the coaches, and gets in more work on his shooting. Probably he’ll head back early next year for another stint in the D-League.

    Garrett, BTW, is another player who needs work on his offense. While the Suns can use him as a PG, he doesn’t score much from that spot, and the Suns actually want to use him at SG, which he is almost completely unready for. On Twitter he talks like he’s a combination of Superman and Lex Luthor, but he’s far from being that for the Suns at this point.

  • Scott

    @R. Bourland -

    Agreed about the immature and NC-oriented tweets. Yet that will probably change as he gets more court time in Phoenix, more experience in the NBA, and grows up.

    @azbballfan -

    Faried has a high motor, which is definitely a trait you draft for. However, Faried is on the small side for his position (6′ 6″ w/o shoes, 228 lbs), and since he had no outside shot, it was uncertain how his play would carry forward into the NBA.

    Morris, while undersized at PF (6′ 8″ w/o shoes, 245 lbs), still has better height and weight for the position than Faried. Morris shoots free throws well, and has a 3 pt shot that is fairly accurate. If he was shooting the 3 now like he did in college, I think you’d find his play to be much better, but he’s shooting 43% this year, compared to 62% from 3 in his last year in college.

    Probably if Gentry played a fast paced offense with Morris at C, and Beasley at PF and Johnson at SF, Morris would trail the play and get more open 3 point shots.

    Anyway, both players are reasonable defenders, and both pull in rebounds. Morris doesn’t bring down as many as Faried, but it was uncertain how many Faried would get due to his lack of height.

    On rebounds, in college Faried collected one every 2 minutes, while Morris got one every 3 minutes. In the NBA, there’s been some drop off for both players. Faried is collecting one every 3 minutes, while Morris is collecting one every 4.5 minutes.

    In the end … the Suns made a safe selection and picked a player who was defensively sound, who could spread the floor, shoot free throws, and rebound. Going with Faried was more of a gamble, and that’s why every team passed over Faried till Denver picked.

  • Scott

    @azbballfan -

    Sorry, my eyes strayed on Morris’s 3 point percentages (I gave the 2pt %). He’s shooting 36% from 3 this year, versus a high of 52.6% from 3 in college.

  • Kevin Zimmerman

    Have to remember Marshall just turned 21 … He’s far from being his best as a basketball player.

    And I don’t know what tweets you were looking at, but he’s known to be a goofball on Twitter — says he likes to push the envelope. So that’s not really the best way to judge his character, IMO. From the interactions I’ve had with him/seen him in, he’s much more mature than most 21 year olds in general.

  • azbballfan

    i really hope that marshall and morris have very good NBA careers

    i know these players are young but the front office needs a real plan in place

    i liked the marshall pick originally but then the dragon came back and i went huh?

    why cant the suns move dragon to the 2 and brown to SF?

    player beas at 4 and gortat at the 5

    players are not gonan develop until they are given quality minutes

    that reminds me robin lopez is doing well in new orleans

    im happy for him

  • Scott

    @azbballfan -

    Keep in mind that when Marshall was drafted the only PG the Suns had under contract was Telfair. They didn’t know they’d be able to get Dragic; in fact, it was widely assumed he’d re-sign with Houston, and IIRC they were offering him more money than Phoenix was.

    As for playing Brown at SF, at 6′ 3″ (in shoes) he’s a bit undersized for SG and would be at a worse disadvantage at SF. Despite that, sometimes when the Suns go small they play Brown at SF.

  • azbballfan

    Usually teams dont use lottery picks to draft backup PGs who play 20 minutes a game at most

    but it is what it is

    i am looking forward to tonights game maybe marshalll will get to play some

    i think someone said babby is in the last year of his contract

    i know gentry is too

    who do you think has a better shot of coming back next year

    i think its babby but it might be blanks thats in his last year of his deal

    i confuse the two although they look nothing alike lol

  • Evan

    If he works at it he can be like less talented Rajan Rondo.

    He will never have a jump shot, just will not happen, but that never stopped Rondo.

  • m.i.milliman

    Actually, it was almost assured that Dragic would come back to PHX. The front office is this teams biggest concern. They have no plan or even a direction, it seems, and they think by gambling on medeoker talent and high lottery draft busts is a way to build a winning team. So, not only can they not draft competently, they can’t evaluate and recognize when other teams do the same. It’s frustrating. It’s going to be like this for some time I think too. Sarver is not a dude that is gonna be okay with fixing the team as long as he’s making money. We may have found the new Donald Sterling.

  • bill.thomas

    @m.i.milliman: Congrats, you really nailed it, man.

  • Ty-Sun

    At the time of the draft, taking Marshall made the most sense. Although the Suns were hoping to get a 2, in the draft, all of the top names were already taken before the Suns pick came up. The big discussion shortly before the draft was which 2 guard might still be available when the Suns pick came around. Everyone knew that Beal would be long gone but there was a lot of speculation as to whether the Suns would get a chance at drafting Ross, Rivers, Lamb or Waiters.

    And let’s not forget that Nash technically wasn’t a free agent until after the draft took place so it’s possible that the Suns FO might have actually made more of an effort to re-sign him if they could have picked up one of those 2 guards in the draft. Unlikely but possible. We all knew that the 2 spot was the team’s greatest need but there was no one left to take a chance on with the 13th pick so they drafted Marshall. I don’t care what anyone says, getting Dragic back wasn’t certain until he signed the contract so picking Marshall was the safe pick since they weren’t going to make Nash a serious offer to return, especially after missing out on a top prospect 2 in the draft.

  • Polish_fan

    i would try marshall in nba game. he wasnt even tried thouh! he doesnt need to score but to PASS and he seems to do that pretty nice. and he will work his shot out i m sure. just let him play and learn nba level

  • Ty-Sun

    Polish_fan, you can be the best passer in the world but still look like a dud in the NBA if you have no one that finishes the play for you. I think now that the Suns have come close to sorting the rotation and scoring roles out that Marshall can be much more effective than he would have been earlier in the season.

    Plus, with no one taking Marshall seriously as a scoring threat it make it harder for him to make great passes if him man is playing off him guarding against passes and not scoring too. At least after his stint in the D-league people guarding him will regard him as at least a marginal scoring threat too.

  • Polish_fan

    agreed. he needs to work on that. but… still that guy deserves a chance after being drafted …. am i right? 2-3 games around 15-20 min to show himself out!