A discussion on the Suns, the coaching change and the future


Dave Dulberg and I discuss the decision for the Phoenix Suns to part ways with Alvin Gentry and what lies ahead, including what the team can do this season to set itself up for success moving forward.

Kevin Zimmerman: So Alvin Gentry and the Suns agreed to go their separate ways on Friday. In my opinion, Gentry was stuck in a very tough position that was similar to Scott Skiles’ in Milwaukee, the roster aside. His contract and the rebuilding arc of his team didn’t match up, and though he apparently got along with management (for some reason I believe he did, because I can’t see anyone not getting along with him) he wasn’t the right guy to take on a rebuilding project. It was almost painful-sounding for him to say he was going to play the younger guys for the sake of development, and it appeared to tear at him that the team wasn’t going to win even when they tried. At the same time, he probably saw this coming, and I’m betting his next few months will be spent with a lot less stress. What was your gut reaction when you heard the news, and what does it say about where the Suns are this season and beyond?

Dave Dulberg: I wasn’t surprised at all. In fact, for his sake I am happy the move came now. That may sound strange because no coach wants it on their resume that they were fired during the middle of a season, especially in the case of Gentry, who had it happen in 2002-03 with the Clippers. But this is a man with a lot of pride, who frankly had a lot of success during his early years with the organization, as an assistant and as a head coach. As you said, I think it tore him up to realize this season was lost and that a “youth movement” was coming. For a man who was just two wins from the NBA Finals three seasons ago, I don’t think that would have sat well, you know, waving the proverbial white flag. One look at him, and you could tell with every new loss the job was beginning to eat him up inside.

What is says about the Suns is that they are back to square one. If they really want to stress rebuilding, this is nothing but a starting point. I am a big proponent of building through the draft and obviously a 13-28 season begins that process, but in order to replicate what OKC, Memphis and even to a degree what the Clippers have done is to be bad for a number of years. With that said, I’m not sure where they turn to in terms of a head coach. I like Lindsey Hunter on an interim basis because of his recent background as a player development guy, but also because he was just in the league in 2010. But before the front office decides to choose a long-term candidate, don’t you think they need to figure out what they want the identity of this team to be moving forward? I mean from what Babby said Friday, do you believe the front office even has a  clear vision of what they want the Suns to be in the coming years?

Zimmerman: That’s the thing. Before the recent game against the Nets, Devin Kharpertian of The Brooklyn Game (I believe in all seriousness) said the Suns roster confused him. They’re not good, but they’re not all that young either. The player development talk is only relevant to Kendall Marshall, and Markieff Morris can only improve to a degree. Outside of those two, does anyone really have unlocked potential? I guess Dragic could use some experience learning how to lead, but after that, it’s just a waiting game to see what the draft holds. So back to that vision. At this point, the Suns might need to suck it up and hand some players away for little in return, if anything just to start from scratch. It appears the front office’s biggest mistake was being stuck between rebuilding and competing for the playoffs. Because no, you don’t have to say you’re tanking in order to rebuild.

Going back to the next coach, do you think hiring some unproven guys like Hunter is the way to go in order to develop talent, whether it be this year or next? I suppose the argument could be made that a guy like Mike Dunlap in Charlotte is a good detail-oriented coach to grow an undisciplined team.

Dulberg: I think if this “youth movement” is something the front office wants to commit to over the next few seasons than the best candidate would have prior experience working with young players, or for that matter players at the college level. I think both Hunter and Turner are better served in their current roles than as potential head coaching candidates, to be honest. The last time the team went with a candidate outside the organization (Terry Porter) it failed miserably, simply because he wasn’t a good fit with the personnel. I think if this team wants to develop their youth (Kendall Marshall, Markieff Morris, Wes Johnson and even Michael Beasley), former head coaches like Stan and Jeff Van Gundy, Maurice Cheeks and Marc Iavaroni probably don’t fit the mold. 

But after news broke of Gentry’s firing, I took a look at a list of assistant coaches around the NBA that have experience in player personnel, scouting and/or experience at the college level. Some of the names that I came up with are as follows: Rex Kalamian (Thunder), Dave Joerger (Grizzlies), as Ryan Weisert aptly pointed out in his coaching piece Mike Malone (Warriors), Mike Wilhelm (Bulls), and yes even with his suspect past at Oklahoma, Kelvin Sampson (Rockets).

I know people would love a name like the Van Gundy brothers, Nate McMillan or even Brian Shaw (who is still waiting on his first shot). While the assistants listed above might not be sexy options because they lack name recognition, their respective resumes indicate an ability to develop young talent. 

My question to you, though, is what is the next shoe to fall this season? This can’t be the first and last move of 2012-13.

Zimmerman: I think most people agree that Marcin Gortat will be the next in line to be on the move. His value isn’t going to get better — I think it’s been getting worse after the first five or so games this year – and he’s an aging piece without much room for improvement. But Gortat is also the player with the most trade value with this team. If the front office expects to do anything significant this year, you’d think it’d have to involve Gortat.

If we’re looking past him though, I think Jared Dudley is a nice trade piece. He proved that he could be a valuable asset off the bench for a championship caliber teams a few years back, and his experience as a starter can only help that. He’s a glue guy of sorts, and I think that’s worth more than most people think. Of course, that’d mean the Suns would be dealing with a playoff team, so the likelihood of getting anything in picks or in young pieces would be questionable.

There’s a scary realization, however. This team seemingly doesn’t have the assets in picks, money or players to do anything that significant, if anything at all. That said, what do you think this team can do this season to set itself up for more options in the offseason? I know you’re a proponent of building through the draft. What can these guys do that would be like the year before Steve Nash arrived for the second time? Is more salary dumping and sacrificing giving up value to do that going too far?

Dulberg: Well I think the answer depends on what the front office believes this team can be in the coming years. What’s different about that 29-53 season before Steve Nash came back to town as compared to this season, is that you had two budding stars in Shawn Marion and Amar’e Stoudemire back then. This team doesn’t have that going for them, so even if they clear some cap room by trading away their limited assets, I’m not so sure free agents will want to come to Phoenix. The weather is nice and the team has a wonderful training staff, but the roster isn’t even that appealing now, imagine if they trade 2-3 more pieces this season.

Plus look back to last summer. They wanted Eric Gordon, but New Orleans matched the offer sheet. They probably had interest in James Harden but didn’t have the assets to wheel and deal like Rockets could. They entertained O.J. Mayo for a day, and although he signed just a one-year deal with Dallas, my guess is he has some sort of deal with Mark Cuban to sign a long-term contract at season’s end. And if not, is he really the guy you want the Suns to overpay for?

I think if you sacrifice value at this point, and yes I know I risk sounding like a broken record, you do so with an eye towards this draft or next year’s draft. I say that only because I’m not so sure this organization can duplicate what was done before the 2004-05 season. This is a different regime and a very different roster.

Maybe, I’m wrong though. Are their names off the top of your head you’d like to see the Suns target this offseason?

Zimmerman: It’s hard for me to see the Lindsey Hunter experiment going well enough where the team should offer him the job permanently, but crazier things could be expected. My gut tells me that’s likely (it being a good idea is a whole other conversation altogether, though he deserves the benefit of the doubt right now). If the team looks outside the organization, I do think it has to bring in someone who is a teacher or someone who can reach a young team – preferably both.

The Mike Malone rumor is interesting, at least because he’s seen first-hand how to get a young team to play defense and to play with confidence. However, I’m not educated enough about his influence on the team to be sold.

Nate McMillan is tempting to me. I don’t think you look at win-loss records as far as experience, specifically, the context of the situations they’ve been in. McMillan has experience with young teams and troubled teams in Seattle and Portland, and he comes across as a guy who wants to teach fundamentals. A more disciplined approach like that I think it what will help a young team — the Dunlap hire in Charlotte appears to be good if only to show that a similarly terrible roster can still look to improve.

Again, something is telling me the Suns will give Hunter more than a serious look as a permanent head coach.

  • bill.thomas

    Based on everything said above and everything that has transpired, the FO should hire Mantei Teo as SVP in charge of “Vision Development.” Peyote, anyone ????

  • Scott

    I wish Hunter luck. He seems like a nice guy. However, I’m wondering if the players will treat him a bit like a substitute teacher: be nice at first, then jailbreak on him.

  • azbballfan

    I hope Hunter does well

    and i hope we get something out of this season by playing our young guys heavy minutes and shipping off Gortat to a team where we can atleast get some other young guys to come in

    Making a Rudy Gay trade, with his mega salary would be a disaster at this point

    and really the Suns need to look at developing, not necessarily trading for, a future star.

    Thats gonna take something this front office has never been able to prove it can do

    Make a quality pick that can do more than just contribute

    We need our young draft picks to be a focus of the team, not just something where they come off the bench for 18 minutes a game and get you 7 points and 4 boards on 39 percent shooting

  • http://valleyofthesuns.com hawki

    @ Scott

    from the previous thread….not even the Suns FO could bungle a top 4 pick….could they ?

    LOL….yeah, that was rhetorical

    anyways….top 4 should be :
    Nerlens Noel
    Shabazz Muhammad
    Ben Mclemore
    Anthony Bennett

    I’ve seen Alex Len a couple times now, and while he has nice size & mobility, no way would I put him in the top 5….Cody Zeller would be 5th.
    However, imo, there is a distinct drop-off from the top 4 to anyone below that.

    Bennett, in particular, has been very impressive & can’t wait to see him in the NCAA Tourney.

  • azbballfan

    I would love to get Alex Len with the Lakers pick

    from what i hear this is the one of the few drafts where teams with high picks may be willing to sell it off for cap space relief

    i think i heard that on marc steins daily dime?

    i dont care who we pick as long as we develop them into productive players

    Your team doesnt go anywhere when your lotto picks get 7 points and 4 boards a game

    They need major minutes and be in a system that emphasizes defense
    and building confidence

    If the Suns can get ship off Gortat for a lotto pick or a 2 guard with potential that will be one less thing we have to worry about come draft day

  • jones

    Finally! Gentry is out and we didn’t get one of those crappy “veteran” coaches.

    All a win.

    Now let’s commit to Morris, Beasley and Marshall.

    Drastically reduce playing times for Scola, Dudley, PJ and perhaps even Dragic.

    Those guys got all the minutes under Gentry and we were still losing games.

    At least now our young guys may get to develop.

  • foreveris2long

    The more I look at the firing of Gentry and the hiring of Hunter, I am convinced the team is not only blaming Gentry for an uncompetitive team but for the perceived lack of development of its youth. I suspect they have taken note that earl Clark and Lopez are now playing better after leaving Gentry and the Suns. I thought at the time both were very good draft choices. Marshall (has shown nothing) and Morris (has shown very little) under Gentry. I am not surprised about their lack of development because they simply are not and will not be good NBA players no matter how much they play as neither one can defend and lack explosion or quickness on the offensive end. Beasley is having his worst season as a pro under Gentry and Dragic played his best ball elsewhere in Houston.

    While I continue to believe drafting Morris and Marshall were just bad picks and no one will make them into starting NBA caliber players, I understand the logic. Maybe when they realize these guys just are not very good, N. McMillan or Sampson will get the nod as a regular hire.

    I agree with the Brooklyn Nets opinion that the Suns lack direction. There really is no good young talent (25 and under) on the team but yet they paid for Scola apparently thinking it could make them playoff relevant. Now they are probably going to move Gortat (should have done this last summer when he was a double double guy), meaning they will not have a decent young center on the roster.

    I wasn’t fooled last summer when there was so much optimism on Coro’s message board surrounding the Suns as I knew they would not be playoff relevant. Maybe management believed Drexler when he commented the Suns should secure the 4th spot in the playoffs.

    Sarver, Babby and Blanks please look in the mirror as you will find most of the blame right there.

  • john

    @bill.thomas

    It’s M-a-n-t-i. Also, he’s Samoan, so I have no idea how peyote plays into anything. Btw, has anyone else on the radio noticed half of the talking heads out there pronouncing his name incorrectly. How Te’o becomes tay-ow, I have no idea.

    @foreveris

    I’m amazed at how much spin some members of the public can view as truth. These people who get hired to make the basketball decisions for the Suns, whether we want to believe it or not, know a heck of a lot more about the game than we do. If the analytics team at the Suns ACTUALLY believed this would be a playoff team, they would have already been fired. However, what do you expect coaches, GMs, owners, etc to say about their team when they know they’ve got a bad product? “Hey, everyone, we’re going to be bad this year. It’s probably not going to be fun to watch, so you might as well just tune out the Suns for a year until we see some change. Sell your season tickets, too, or even better yet, see if you can get a refund from the ticket office. Trust me, you’re not going to want to watch this train wreck anyway.” People like Sarver, Babby, Blanks, and Gentry/Hunter, you have to treat what they say like you treat the words of a politician. It’s all self-serving, it’s all spin, it’s all a game, and the game is to keep themselves in your favor so you’ll give them the only thing that matters to them – votes/money.

  • Scott

    Something Blanks said bothers me. He said something along the lines of, “In this business, risk trumps safety.”

    Really? Does this mean I have a shot at being Blanks’ replacement? Because I’ve never had anything to do with basketball in my life, so keeping Blanks in his position would be the safe thing, and putting me in would be the risky thing. So let’s do it!

    I’m all set … where’s my parking spot? :)

  • john

    I’d gladly take his salary for a year. :)

  • Scott

    Well, if John is taking Blanks’ spot, then maybe I should take Babby’s.

    After all, what’s riskier: someone who knows contracts and law, or someone who *doesn’t know* contracts and law? :)

    I am also fond of pastrami, though I’m not quite sure how that relates.

  • http://none Sillmarillion

    If you need a 3rd guy I can do Sarver’s part!

  • Scott

    @Sillmarillion -

    I don’t know. As others might point out, what could be riskier than keeping Sarver as owner? :)

  • DBreezy

    @Scott,

    Yeah the risk trumps safety comment made me laugh for a couple of reasons. In the big picture sense because it sounds like some of the crap some investment ‘professionals’ have given over time. In the basketball sense because his draft picks reflect just the opposite. Also I agree about the substitute teacher thing, especially with two assistants likely walking. The Sacramento game may be the hardest they play for him between the long layoff and until they realize what their new roles are. From the quick look I saw, he’s got a lot of back to back games against tough opponents and little practice time after that. For the type of candidate he is, I think this is the wrong time to try him if you want to go this route. They should have waited till summer and given him a staff with a good lead assistant who can guide him through the ins and outs of the game stuff. Those that have succeeded coming into coaching the way Lindsey is have all had that.

    @Foreveris,

    After listening to Gentry on KTAR, I think he mainly got fired when he did because he made those coments about a youth movement coming. He made it clear that he hadn’t talked to Lon or Sarver before making them and he forced Lon to awkwardly respond to them. That rubbed Lon the wrong way and after another tough loss, he had the ammo he needed.

    Listening to Alvin, I got the impression that in some respects this was similar to the D’Antoni departure. Some beef between the GM and coach, a meeting with the owner where he expresses support for both guys but makes it clear that the final decision rests with the GM. So either work it out, or you know what’s up. Alvin went out of his way to praise Sarver, never mentioned Lance or Lon by name, didn’t call out players, but kept going on about what he called other factors.

    I laughed when he didn’t mentioned Lon as once again it made Lon look like a fool. He had just gone on tv talking about his long and good relationship with Alvin, but Alvin couldn’t even utter the mans name. He also had a lot of fight and vigor about whether he was a good coach or not and whether he was up to the challenge. I also noticed that he didn’t once say the cliched chant of maybe the players need another voice. To me what he was saying was very clear.

    I also have noticed the continued disconnect between Lance and Lon, the state of the roster and in some respects even the new coach. It was kind of chicken shit IMO, for Lon to defer question on Hunter to Blanks after he said that he would explain things further at his presser announcing Gentry’s dismissal. I guess we’re not supposed to be listening. Listening to Blanks, his demands for Lindsey basically sounded like what they expected from Gentry at season’s start-win games and compete for a playoff spot first with development secondary. He rambled on about accountability which is funny because Gentry has held a lot of players accountable, almost everyone has eaten some pine this season.

    When he talked about Alvin’s departure he said that the Suns have to keep their culture and that what he meant would be clarified when the interim guy was announced. To me, Blanks’ words of what they want to see go right back to why Alvin got himself in trouble: he conceded it was nearing time to start playing the young guys and by-gum these here Suns don’t ever develop players at the expense of looking like they’re competitive. We must keep the culture of a roster that significant portions of wont even last the next season and a half. Mount Lon was angered and he brought down the thunderbolt….with dignity of course!

    It would be funnier if I thought that Lance and Lon were on their last legs, but I don’t think they are. I expect that Lon will get a one year extension after the season so that his contract lines up with Lance’s. The Wrath of Lahn will continue. The funny part is listening to Lindsey admit that although he is a big time defensive guy, that this roster isn’t built for that and that he will play who he wants based on feel. He even said that while he knows that the judgment is based on wins and losses he isn’t really worried about it. That’s an interesting contrast with Lance’s words. I actually agree with Hunter, but he may be another frog in the pot.

  • Cam

    @DBreezy
    Interesting take on the working relationship between Lon and Lance. I had just assumed that, because they had been hired at the same time, they were on the same page in their decision making. The more I read her and at BSOTS the more I question my uninformed assumptions.

    With that being said, Blanks needs to do something soon. If he wants to show that he deserves to be the GM of this team he needs make some moves, showing that this FO actually has a plan. Suns fans can see the writing on the wall. Tanking, rebuilding, youth movement, call it what you like, but we all see it. What the FO needs to admit now, to the fans, is that that is what they are planning on doing. By holding on to players with some value, Gortat, Dudley, etc., instead of moving these players, feels like the FO way of trying to fool their fans. They don’t want to admit that this team is in full rebuild mode. One good draft isn’t going to fix this team. Multiple drafts with strong, smart, effective players being drafted is what needs to happen. IMHO there are teams right now who need size to make pushes to go deep into the playoffs. By taking advantage of these situations you can maximize your returns.

    There have been disagreements on this site as to what Gortat’s value is. I can tell you that, although he hasn’t played as well as we would’ve liked, in my opinion he is most likely still highly coveted by many teams.
    I’ve written about what I would like to see in exchange for him from teams like the Celtics and the Thunder. By browsing those team blogs I can tell you that their fans value Gortat just as much. Just last week I checked out Celtics Hub and fans were writing, hoping that the Celtics would offer Melo, Lee, a 1st round pick, and even Avery Bradley or Sullinger. That’s more than I, as a Suns fan, would’ve ever hoped for in return for Gortat.

    If you actually read all of that, thanks, if not, here is what I really want to say. This FO needs to make a move, just for the sake of making a move, to show their fans that they really do have a plan and to confirm what we all know, the Suns are rebuilding. The longer this team sits on assets with value, the more it feels like they (FO) are trying to pull the wool over their fans eyes, trying to fool people into thinking this team is one or two players and one or two years away from contention. Go Suns.

  • john

    @Cam- I would sign that deal in a heartbeat if the Celts offered it. Holy cow, I hope their FO is as high on Gortat as their fans.

  • Scott

    Another thing I thought was funny was the media was given immediate access to the players to ask them about the coaching change. Awkward! All the players could say was, “He’ll hold us accountable.” It sounds like all Hunter brings is discipline. Gortat, scrupulously honest as he is, said, “I don’t know if he’ll be a good coach or a bad one. We’ll see.”

    Hunter has said he’s going to reward those who work hardest with court time, which caused Beasley to say something to the effect of, “That’s great, because I work my tail off and I deserve a lot more court time.”

    Dream on, Beasley, you defensive-stopper. :)

    Kendall Marshall had a similar response to Beasley’s, which means … we’ll see more of Marshall bringing the ball up the court for the team and passing it to the nearest person once he crosses half-court? And after that doing nothing because he can’t shoot, defend, or rebound? Because, you know, bringing the ball up against no defensive pressure is very, very hard work. ;)

    If he’s being honest about rewarding effort, Hunter will give Beasley and Marshall only a few minutes, and pointedly keep them on the bench while Garrett, Johnson, and Zeller get more time.

  • DBreezy

    @Cam,

    Beyond the obvious questions of capability, the front office suffers from instability as well and Sarver is the only one who can stop it. The front office and coaches’ future is just as murky today as it was before Alvin was dismissed. While my hunch is that Lon gets a one year extension to match Blanks’ deal, that has not happened and standard Sarver operation would be not to do so until after the season regardless of intent. How do you make effective deals in that environment? Also making a deal just for the sake of doing something is tougher with the new cap rules. While I think it will be easier once more of the league is on contracts signed under the new cba that qualify for the stretch provision, that will take time.

    Reading all of this stuff lately from various sources also makes me wonder if an old Suns problem will reappear. While Babby has done better in previous years, previous Suns GM’s were often hamstrung by the reputation/perception that the Suns were frugal and could be haggled into a poor deal to meet management’s goals on time. While I don’t think frugality is an issue right now, I wonder if opposing GM’s will look at the very public turmoil around here in a bad season and see an opportunity to take advantage of a front office team that could be on the ropes? I wonder if things like that will affect the trade value of Gortat and others?

  • Scott

    I would be such a terrible coach. I would have sarcastic nicknames for the developing players, a bit like Phil Jackson did with Kwame.

    Ballboy (Marshall)
    Shooter (Garrett)
    Dribble (Johnson)
    Defenseless (Beasley)
    Can’t Miss (Zeller)

  • Cam

    @DBreezy

    I totally understand your opinion of the leagues’s perception of the Suns FO and their prior poor deal management. I would hope that this FO doesn’t get bamboozled.

    As for working under pressure, without a proper extension, many coaches and management personnel do that on a yearly basis. The goal should be to earn that extension, validating your worth. Hopefully Lon can step up and show everyone that he knows is stuff pertaining to law and contracts. That’s what he was brought here for in the first place. In the end I think its going to be feast or famine with this FO. They (Lon and Lance) are either going to blow our socks off or bury our hopes and dreams in the next month as it pertains to the trade market.

    I know the cap rules are a little tougher but the Suns have flexibility under the cap, which should allow them to make a trade that could net them something of value, like a pick, while taking on a little more money. I’m not saying they should go out and get Rudy Gay, that’s unwise given the situation this team is in (rebuild). That kind of salary would severely restrict the team and slow this process. I’m just of the opinion that this team should use an asset, maybe Telfair, Brown, someone on that level, to validate to their fans that they are indeed looking towards the future. Some people are commenting on BSOTS that giving up our pick in this draft, even at the 2-4 spot, for a player like Rondo would be worth it. I disagree. That would fly in the face of a rebuild. Collecting valuable future picks, whole taking on a player that a team needs to dump for salary reasons should be their goal. Tim Thomas to Seattle and Baron Davis to Cleveland come to mind. Go Suns.

  • Scott

    BTW, Shooter (Garrett) had his third game with the Jam and they defeated the Mad Ants.

    He’s playing starting PG, not SG, which suggests to me that the Suns sent him to Bakersfield with the idea of working on his PG skills, not SG skills. Which leads me to wonder if he is now being seen as 2nd tier PG for the Suns after Telfair leaves, and ahead of Marshall?

    In 37 min, Shooter was 8 of 17 plus 2 for 2 FT for 18 pts. (If the point total seems high for him, there’s no defense in the D-League, and players run up and down.) He missed all 3 of his 3 pt shots, but prior to that game he was 6-7 from 3, so he’s at 60%. He’s also 100% on his FTs (4-4 total). He had 10 assists in the game, and is currently making slightly more steals than turnovers.

    http://www.nba.com/dleague/playerfile/diante_garrett/

  • Scott

    (Wait … I may have that wrong. It looks despite his high number of assists, Garrett may be playing SG.)

  • azbballfan

    While i love to bash Sarver, unless Blanks and Babby are controlled from behind the scenes with some cheap string attached to them, this mess with the front office is blanks and babbys doing

    Yeah, Sarver hired them

    but now hes got to look at the future and say

    Babby doesnt know anything about basketball unless its in contract form

    none of the things blanks has done has measurably improved the team.

    And, in the one instance it kind of did, like say trading for Gortat, it now doesnt matter because they wont cough up the dough and he wants to leave.

    Sarver needs to have the axe fall on babby and blanks, i mean dear god they cant even talk without you saying to your self “well then why the hell did you say this 10 seconds ago”

    you want player development? but you also want to win?

    does not compute!

    and the fact that they have had 2 off seasons to come up with even a plan and nothing seems to be in place is just a joke

    and the hilarious thing is, there is so many layers of responsibility around both of them, that you dont you who to blame

    Who drafts people? blanks? or babby? what about Trelor?

    who really decides playing time? because it sounds like its babby and not the coach

    or is it blanks because marshall and beasley was blanks and babbys draft and signing?

    its hard to tell!

    dammit sarver kick these two to the curb unless you want your team to be last in the west for the next decade

  • Scott

    @azbballfan -

    One of the things the Suns talk about all the time these days is accountability … holding people accountable.

    So what does Blanks have to do to get fired? Just curious. I would think he’d be on thinner ice than Gentry, as Gentry at least had a history of high performance and Blanks does not.

    IMO, Blanks is well-meaning but inept. The best players brought in this summer seem to have been brought in by either Sarver (Dragic, Scola) or Majerle (Tucker), neither of whom are GM.

  • azbballfan

    I am assuming that if Blanks and Telor mess up this next draft, with the Suns having possibly 3 picks, two of them in the lottery, that blanks will be sacrificed at the altar just like Gentry was

    if i was blabby and blanks, i would be using this season to look at the draft with a fine toothed comb

    If they mess this up everyone, including trelor and blabby need to go

    Anyone can make a few mistakes, but making the same mistakes over and over just means these were the wrong people for the job

  • foreveris2long

    AzBballCam and Scott I agree with ya. Some of us were telling John a week or so ago that Gortat was easily worth a 1st round pick and possibly a lottery pick. He thought we could not do better than a 2nd round pick for him. I agree OKC and Boston are prime trading targets. I would love to get OKC’s 1st round pick they got from Houston and Jeremy Lamb. Boston has attractive assets as well.

    John with regards to spinning a losing season OKC sold it perfectly. They did not lie about playoff optimism. They collectively held they were taking their lumps for 2 years learning how not to lose. They embraced each loss as a learning opportunity and a fountain of experience for their young team. There was no misconception by anyone.

    Absolutely Blanks and Babby IMO deserve to be fired. John perhaps due to my career and knowledge of basketball beyond just being a fan, I think within 60 days I could do a better job than both Babby and Blanks. Maybe I am overly optimistic but I think both of these guys are terrible.

  • Lon Babby

    Transitions are never easy… but we feel that with our discipline and perseverance the future of the Suns’ franchise will be a bright one. Thank you.

    (Microphone and camera still rolling)

    Babby: Everyone gone? I gotta get outside and breathe. Anybody had lunch yet? I think I’m gonna have a pastrami on rye. Is Majerle still around? If he is tell him there’s an extra $5 in it for him if he wants to make a delivery run.

    (Robert walks into room)

    Sarver: We good?

    Babby: Yeah, I think I’ve bought you the rest of this season.

    Sarver: Good, good. One last thing, I want you to take the company card down to Office Max and start buying supplies. We’re doing another team collage. I really think that collage helped the last time we tried it. One last thing, keep Blanks busy for a few more days. I don’t want him speaking to the media.

    Babby: Yes, sir.

    (Babby at Office Max)

    Cashier: That’ll be $45.17

    Babby: Here you go.

    Cashier: I’m sorry sir this card has been declined.

  • azbballfan

    I can understand teams hiring coaches with no coaching experience

    The Suns have nothing to lose by getting Hunter in there, unless the players revolt because they really wanted thunder dan or something

    you can get away with having a coach with no experience if you have them flanked by knowledgeable assistants, and GMs and player development guys

    But you cant really get away with it when your bosses above you sitting in the front office dont have any real, tangible NBA experience either

    Blabby came out and said he doesnt know anything about basketball and thats why he hired blanks

    i remember him saying he needed a basketball genius

    You dont give the reigns of the team to two people without real, proven track records and come into a situation where your team is facing the most important off season in franchise history

    All they had to do was resign stoudemire and add a quality enforcer in the paint.

    Its not that hard to see that the real rebuild of this team should have began when stoudemire left instead of steve nash

    Nash deserved better than what he got in the post stoudemire era

  • Forever is2long

    Lon Babby, excellent stuff

  • DBreezy

    @Cam,

    While we still have lots of time till the deadline, from what I’ve read so far rumor wise there’s a heavy dose of people looking for a whole lotta something for nothing. Attempts to dump a Gay, Bargnani, Gasol, type deal on an under the cap team while actually adding legit talent in the process. Because of the stretch provision there doesn’t seem to be as much on the rumor front for guys signed the last two offseasons who have turned out to be mistakes. For instance you don’t see the Celts panicking to move Courtney Lee. A Hedo Turkeyglue deal doesn’t hurt you as bad as it did before. Perhaps we’ll see the smaller type of deals for a Telfair or O’Neal type closer to the deadline, and I’ll be curious to see how much the same salary dumping theme creeps into those deals. I definitely see what kinds of deals you’re talking about though, hopefully something along those lines presents itself. I also agree that the Suns shouldn’t dump their picks for a Rondo.

  • john

    @foreveris2long

    There’s a gigantic difference between what the Oklahoma City Thunder went through and what the Phoenix Suns are going through. OKC had Durant. They KNEW they were going to be a force for many years. Also, I would challenge you to come up with any documentation where their ownership/management came out and said they weren’t aiming for/expecting a playoff appearance. I’m not saying it doesn’t exist, I just want to see it before I believe it.

    I agree with you that Babby and Blanks are terrible. I believe it too. And, like you, I would bet on myself to do better than them. Anyone with a competitive edge, sports experience, or a career in sports would always like to think they would do better than an “opponent,” but the fact is you/I have no idea. For instance, tell me what your plan would be to prevent the downfall of the Suns despite the impending fall of Stoudemire and Nash. Would would have been your course of action? And also, what do you think the chances that all the other pieces would have fallen into place to make your plan work? It’s no so simple as saying, “I want LeBron,” and BANG, it happens. Can I say beyond a shadow of a doubt that there WERE better scenarios actually presented to the Suns than the course they took, and can I say without doubt that I would have recognized it at the time? Not in the slightest. I’d like to hope I’m smarter than that, but like I said, these guys have analytics teams and hosts of people who actually get paid to give their opinions on talent, and they still came up with the crappy results they got. How arrogant would I have to be to say I absolutely would have done a better job without the benefit of hindsight? Btw, what has your career experience been in the game?

    Also, a note about Marcin. I challenged you to substantiate any of your previous Marcin trade rumor claims, and, to my knowledge, you didn’t. These trade rumors mentioned in this comment thread were second-hand from a comment thread on a Celtics blog. Using this site for comparison, I’d say there’s at least an 80% chance that comment was written by someone who has never looked at a stat sheet in their life, watches a dozen games a year, and has absolutely no clue about any team besides their own. How much value are you really going to put into a comment from a fan on a Celtics blog?

    Another thing I’d like to reiterate. I didn’t say no GM in the NBA would give up more than a 2nd round pick (or at least I didn’t mean to say that). Much crazier things have happened, and people do a lot of stupid things in times of desperation (See: Kurt Thomas trade). I said *I* wouldn’t give up anything more than that for Gortat. The only reasons I would give up more than that would be if 1. My team was one decent center away from being a legitimate contender or 2. I believed Marcin Gortat was worth $12M-$14M annually (which he will be seeking on his next contract). Given those two thoughts, I can’t think of a team who needs him.

    Miami has LeBron, they don’t need anything.
    NY doesn’t need him.
    Indiana doesn’t need him.
    Brooklyn doesn’t need him.
    Chicago doesn’t need him.
    Atlanta doesn’t need him.
    OKC, meh, I don’t see a reason why he would make them any better than Perkins. Their problem isn’t scoring, it’s interior defense, and I don’t think Gortat is any better than Perkins in that regard. I guess OKC is a *possibility,* and they have picks to throw away if they want, but I don’t think Gortat is the last piece of their puzzle.
    LAC doesn’t need him.
    SA doesn’t need him.
    Memphis doesn’t need him.
    Golden State doesn’t need him.
    Denver doesn’t need him.
    Utah doesn’t need him.
    And NOBODY should believe Gortat is worth that much cash.

    Who needs Gortat? Who needs a slightly-better-than average center who can only work effectively in the PnR, doesn’t like to do the dirty work, and can’t defend low-post moves to save his life? I will admit this, though. Marcin’s past successes (any year besides this year) might be enough to convince some GM somewhere that his glory days aren’t over. He HAS done the little things in the past. He HAS hustled, rebounded, and defended in the past. I guess someone could think he could get back to that if he was motivated correctly. If I thought Marcin was still the kind of player he was in ORL (a bulldog), I might give him a shot. But organizations (unlike their fans) will know everything there is to know about a trade target. No team in the NBA (unlike their fans) will be oblivious to the fact that Marcin Gortat didn’t show up for this season.

    Again, crazier things have happened than someone giving up more than a second-rounder (or lottery-protected first) for Gortat, but I wouldn’t touch him. Each draft contains at least two players at his position that are better than him (except extreme off years like 2009 maybe).

    I’ll root for a lopsided deal like the one that Celtics fan proposed. Hopefully Ainge would want to throw his old team a bone, but I’m not counting on it.

  • john

    To make it simple if you tl;dr the above post

    1. Where are the Marcin proposals that get the Suns a respectable yield?
    2. If you accept that the Suns are shopping him (which they have essentially said/proven as much) why aren’t teams flocking to acquire such a valuable asset?
    3. Would YOU buy high on a guy whose stock has fallen off the face of the earth since last season?

    You guys make me feel like I’m a Marcin hater while last year I was one of his biggest defenders from his detractors. Sheesh, I’m not trying to hate on the man. Btw, I think it’s great that you and I both think we’d make such excellent GMs and we have such widely differing views on the matter. Goes to show how easy the job is.

    Right now, though, I’d bet on me. I’m the guy who wouldn’t buy high on a guy in the gutter. Although, you seem to fit the PHX profile a little better, given that you seem to like to make the riskier choices. Maybe you could succeed Lon and Lance afterall.

  • azbballfan

    All the Suns had to do was keep that team together from 2010 its not that hard

    Sarver didnt want to pay him, New York did

    instead of spending money on sarver the suns spent money on childress, warrick, frye, and turkolgu

    i remember gentry saying at the time no one can replace amare.

    How about getting something, anything back?

    I would have signed stoudemire to whatever deal he wanted

    That would keep the team together for another run

    sweeping the spurs is not a fluke

    taking the Lakers to 6 games is not a fluke

    if stoudemire didnt want to resign i would have worked out a sign and trade to get something back

    Anyone could have looked at Turkoglu and said “power forward? no way”

    How can these people get this stuff wrong when its their job to prevent this exact kind of situation.

    Even if Childress for example didnt work out, how is Frye, Turk and Warrick gonna replace stoudemires 26 points 8 boards and more than a block a game

    its alot harder to get 3 players to play well than 1 guy

    Hindsight might be 20/20 but the Suns have made moves since then that have not worked out either

    We have no future talent on this team, other than the draft which we might screw up on

    Beasley, Johnson, and Marshall and Garrett are unproven young players that may or may not be a building block

    This win now and rebuild at the same time philosophy is a disaster

    Stoudemire left a few seasons ago and Nash left this Summer we should have more talent than this

  • john

    How’s Stoudemire doing these days?

  • Cam

    @azballfan

    Actually, and I can’t believe I’m defending the man, but Sarver offered Amare a 5 year deal @95 mil total. He took the NY deal @99.7 mil total. If Amare had wanted to really stay he would’ve taken the Suns deal, IMHO. He took the NY deal because the final two years of the Suns deal were only partially guaranteed, becoming fully guaranteed if he play a minimum amount of minutes in the third and fourth seasons of the deal. I actually think that was one of the best offers/decisions that Sarver has made in the last five years. If the Warlocks, whom I assume Sarver consulted with, didn’t think that Amare’s knees would hold up, then why would Sarver lock up so much salary in him. Yeah the Suns could’ve possibly made some noise in the 2011 season but let’s be honest, no one really thought the Suns were going to compete as well as they did in 2010, only being one Jrich box out from pushing the Fakers to the limit. And the Suns actually did a sign and trade with NY. All they got though was a 2nd out of it. That’s a far cry from the picks they got for Steve Nash, I’ll give you that. I think the Turkeyglue signing was the Suns way of trying to get a Diaw type of player on the team. We all know how that worked out.

    @John
    I think the reason the Suns haven’t received any offers, that we’ve heard about, for Marcin is because GMs are still trying to figure out if they are going to be in the hunt come all-star weekend. I think e closer we get to the deadline the more we will hear of offers for Gortat. Teams like the Celtics and the Wolves have not been consistent lately. So as a GM you have to find out if its worth making the jump at one possible piece, ie Gortat, or if it’s time to blow it up and start over. I think we have all seen that with the way the Celtics have been playing lately and the trade rumors they have been floating out there (making Pierce available).

    Pertaining to his value. I’m thinking/hoping that GMs around the league who may be interested in Gortat see his inconsistency as a by-product of the Suns team as a whole. Many people on is log complain about Dragons/Telfairs inability to get Marcin the ball off of the PnR. But when he does get opportunities he more often than not makes them count. He has had more poor shooting nights this year than last that I can recall. You’ve got to remember though that big men are a premium in this league. You can’t tell me that a team like the Celtics, hoping to make me last push these next two years, wouldn’t possibly offer Fab Melo, a player who hasn’t sniffed the court, a lottery protected 1st, and old man Jason Terry for Gortat. If I was a Celtics fan I WOULD want Gortat for that price. Look at their roster, KG at center isn’t going to get them to the Finals. Gortat will allow them to compete against the teams with big men inside more effectively, and he’s under contract for another year after this. As a Suns fan I would be happy to see an offer like this too. That way the Suns get a return in Melo, who they can play and evaluate before the upcoming draft, seeing if he may fill the need in the middle or not, they get a late 1st to use on a player or use to move up in the draft, and they get saddled with an aging vet who has a contract that is a little expensive, but who could play the Grant Hill locker room role for what we all agree is soon to be a fairly young, inexperienced team. Go Suns.

    P.S. if you think Terry is too valuable to that team then you might want take a look at them play. Bradley is Hurt now but he is the clear cut starter at the two and Courtney Lee has been playing much better than Terry the last month or so. Also, their ages, at the same yearly salary, makes Courtney Lee much more valuable.

  • Cam

    Third sentence in third paragraph above should say “on this blog”. Sorry. Go Suns.

  • foreveris2long

    John, I never mentioned anything about a GM in reference to yo so maybe you have me confused with someone else. Re: my background I am a licensed attorney and have been asked to be an agent or on an agent’s team on more than one occasion. I have sat in a few high power meetings with certain team executives. I also played a sport in college and had the opportunity to represent two college players who played in the NBA but I refused as I did not like the agency business.

    Sarver, Babby and Blanks have made so many errors and most can see them, there is no way I am going back over all of them and comment what I would do differently. However just in the past 3 years I never ever would have signed HeDon’t Turkolu, NEVER. This means we still would likely have Lopez and Clark. I would never have traded Dragic AND a 1st round pick for Brooks. Finally I would never ever have drafted Marshall and would have taken Henson instead. We would have a young front court of Lopez, Clark (who now starts for the lakers over Gasol) and Henson.

    On a similar note I will add this, I ran into a guy this morning at the gym who noticed I was wearing Suns gear. He volunteered he was Joe Johnson’s cousin and could not understand why the Suns and Sarver refused to give Joe Johnson $50,000,000 over the life of the contract but would give $45,000,000. All we could do is shake our heads.

    There are a number of people who can do a better job and some are likely on this board, it is not brain surgery.

  • DBreezy

    Sigh. You know you’re really in the doldrums when every day you’re spending most of your time looking in the rear view mirror or dreaming of Jeannie. Alas what to do with Stoudemire? My personal opinion going into the 2007-2008 season was that the team and D’Antoni should have one more shot at going for a title and then meaningful tweaks should have been made. If they failed, I wanted them to move Marion for picks, young players, or role player types that fit more of the identity Kerr wanted to establish and obviously would help work the cap figure down.

    I also wanted the, to recognize that nearly every championship team’s star player had a flaw or two. Jordan’s are beyond rare. Guys like Duncan and Shaq were/are serious FT liabilities in big games. Shaq was also the hardest player in the NBA to coach defensively on S/R’s-can you imagine if the 76ers had a more offensively skilled 5 to work with Iverson in that Finals? It would have been more interesting. Kobe was known for alienating his teammates, quitting to make a point at I opportune times, and shooting way too much. Pierce and Allen weren’t known as defenders before KG came and Pierce wasn’t thought of as a winner by many. Tony Parker couldn’t shoot during a lot of the Spurs chips. KG was the first Lebron as a great all around player and teammate known for wilting in the 4th quarter. That brings me to Dirk who has/had flaws most similar to Amar’e. They scored in different ways, but were bith dominating offensive players who weren’t very good on defense or the glass. Dallas chose to celebrate Dirk for what he was and build around his flaws, similar to how the Celts put three guys with individual flaws together to where they could compensate for each other. You could say the same about Miami with Lebron and Wade.

    The Suns on the other hand, slowly began to become more focused on Amar’e’s flaws than what he did well. This became all the more frustrating when they simultaneously ignored similar flaws with Nash as an organization. Does anyone think Amar’e could have gotten away with a public interview where he said that he was too important to the team offensively for him to work on D?

    The tough thing to remember about Amar’e is that the problems between him and the team started before his eye injury and well before that oft talked about exam on his knees. It started when despite him really taking off after the Shaq deal and into the following season(08-09), whispers began that the Suns may not feel he was worthy of an extension and may consider moving him as part of a rebuild.

    Coro got slammed for even mentioning it as a ‘thought’ but soon enough this very plan became public. I was mad because I wanted them to rebuild with them and use the upcoming expiring deals of Nash, Bell, Shaq, along with LB and Diaw to setup themselves up to be a player in the 2010 free agent class. I kind of find it funny to see/hear the organization and fans tout the attractiveness of the valley to free agents, yet gloss over how they didn’t even attempt to be part of one of the biggest classes in history when they had one of the very subjects of that class on their roster already.

    That said, once they made the decision to move Amar’e vs pay him in 2009 they should have just gotten it done. Instead they acted surprised that he and the team took off after Gentry was installed and returned to a more appropriate style for the personnel and again when Amar’e was Amar’e after getting his sea legs back post eye surgery. Neither event made the team rethink paying him the max. This despite knowing that Golden State was willing to go there during the failed Steph Curry trade and later when the Cavs and Heat said they would pay him as long as they kept Lebron or Wade during their trade talks. He even took a physical with Miami with the teams permission.

    The main point here is that wise or not, they knew the market would pay him a figure they weren’t wiling to. Btw this isn’t hindsight for me as Foreveris, Hawki and others can tell you I said these things as it was unfolding. They should have moved him long before that summer, but Sarver wanted to milk every last drop just like he did with Nash. So in that respect, yes this is the result of a post-Nash/Amar’e world but it didn’t have to be this ugly and it’s still somewhat frightening to listen to them speak. Over the years we’ve had philosophical discussion on rebuilding on the fly vs tanking/draft. For most of those discussions the Suns had assets to make it an actual discussion. Now they don’t, yet they’re still acting like there’s a choice to make despite 3 straight lottery seasons and being the 4th worst team in the league.

    The last thing that annoys me about Stoudemire is how people try to use what happened to him in NY as justification for not signing him. Ok I get that, but it annoys me to hear the same people turn around and act like the Suns docs can magically cure players with injury histories that are even more suspect. Redd. Greg Oden who has only played 82 games since 2008-2009. Gordon who has only played 214 games in the same timeframe with knee issues that are always slow to heal. Amare has played about 260 games in the same timeframe despite more serious injuries. If people think the Suns can keep those other guys healthy, why couldn’t they have done the same for Amar’e? They should have just traded him, but some of the excuses for what they did do are just weak to me.

    Ah the past, wasn’t that fun? It all could still be summed up as the main problems lie in the front office.

  • john

    You did mention a GM position. You said you thought you could do a better job than both Babby and Blanks. And I agree it isn’t brain surgery as well. There are many more uncontrollable variables involved in general managing or president of basketball operations… ing. :)

    Just in your JJ example, what other implications would his signing have brought? Just because I know your mind is made up, I won’t do any research, but I will talk a little off the top of my head. JJ would have been making around $10M per, Nash around $11M, Marion something like $15, and Amar’e was either just into his monster deal or expecting it the next year, so essentially they would have known Amar’e counted for around $16M. That’s $52M for 80% of a team. You might not think that $5M is that big of a leap, but that $1M per is the difference between having $10M to fill out the other 8 spots and $9M. 10% of the entire remaining cap. And ALL of those financial restrictions would be borne due to signing the FOURTH BEST PLAYER ON THE TEAM. If they knew they weren’t letting two-time go, they knew Amar’e was the future, they basically had to choose between Marion and Johnson. That decision is debatable (I probably would have gone with Johnson, but that’s tough to be objective about something like that now). Point is, it was never realistic to imagine the Suns could have kept all four. They were stretching it at $45M already. That extra 10% Johnson wanted might have simply been the straw that broke the camel’s back. There’s a breaking point for everything.

    And you really think you’d be a great PBO/GM without giving alternative perspectives any thought or credence? The fact that we even have anything to talk about (or DBreezy’s post above) proves there is no black and white. Keeping JJ wouldn’t have guaranteed any amount of additional success and it would have left you with around $10M to fill 8 spots. The Heat didn’t even win the first year with that strategy and they have two of the twenty best players who have ever played the game (one who will probably finish in the top 5).

    Maybe you need to be convinced beyond all reason that you’re right in order to be a good PBO/GM. You might be onto something.

  • foreveris2long

    DBreezy, Good stuff, especially when you commented Sarver was surprised how well Amare and the Suns played the second half of that season. Absolutely you were in the trade Amare market the prior summer when Sarver knew he would not make him a max player. Sarver totally lost his mind when Amare walked and he signed Hedon’t and two or three other stiffs. It was a panic move in the 1st degree.

  • DBreezy

    @John,

    The JJ situation was before my time posting on any of these sites, but at the time to me that whole deal was all about Trix and the season and summer prior. Everybody knew that Matrix was overpaid from the previous regime and there was a dilemma about maxing him and trying to rebuild vs letting him go and enter the dumps-a similar dilemma that the current front office has posed in recent seasons.

    I think it’s safe to say that if they knew they were getting Amar’e they would have declined to pay Matrix. For me personally, after watching him shrink time and time again against his main competition at the time in Peja, made me question his worth at that figure. Not saying I was right, just that’s how I felt at the time.

    The 2003-2004 team that D’Antoni took over provided some insights. I personally thought the young ins did well for Mike D even of the record didn’t show it, which surprised me as I saw D’Antoni as lame duck transition coach to a new ownership(you feel me Keith Smart?). But I also saw D’Antoni experiment a lot with go to guys late in that season. He tried to let Matrix do it first, but that’s just not his game. He also drew up stuff for Amar’e, LB, Casey, etc to see what they could do.

    The guy he really worked on though was JJ, he got his confidence rolling and had him playing 4 positions on the court. That convinced me that the Suns could afford to move Marion that offseason as long as they took Iggy or Denf in the draft. D’Antoni and BC convinced Sarver and consultant Kerr not to do it. That was a mistake, especially if Sarver knew he wasn’t willing to pay luxury tax. I give him a break because he was a new owner, but it still is what it is. I said the same thing about the neophyte mistakes of D’Antoni and Kerr later.

    They also didn’t need to sign Q once they missed on Okur that summer. That was basically done for JJ insurance and was likely part of why they didn’t pay him 50 at seasons start. Thing is, it took D’Antoni’s creativity to make that not look like one of the worst signings of that offseason. If D’Antoni went with the lineup he finished the previous season with either Voshkul, Hunter or Lampe at the 5, Q would have been a 45M dollar bench player as he was beaten by JJ in camp.

    Though none of us realized it would be a trend back then, the teams unwillingness to make the proper moves in favor of winning in the moment started there. We know from the SSOL book that Sarver wanted to cut payroll and avoid the LT as soon as he took over which was the reason they wanted to move Matriz in the first place. They also knew that the price for JJ would likely go up, and that Amar’e was due for an extension the following season. If you know you’re not gonna pay, then you have to make a move just like OKC did this season. The good news is that BC pulled an amazing rabbit out his hat for a swan song with the Diaw deal along with Bell. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a better trade of a RFA signed to an offer sheet than that one: 3 number 1′s and a young player. I know they ultimately turned that into Marcin Gortat (a player they had already drafted and traded), Wes Johnson and a future #1, but it was a hell of a deal.

  • john

    I agree, I thought they should have paid JJ and got rid of Marion as well, but then we’d likely be having the same discussion, but with Marion as the subject.

  • john

    @Cam

    I forgot to mention earlier that I also like your proposed reasoning for the Celts wanting Gortat so badly. Personally, I wouldn’t have any part of it if I were the Celts GM (trading away more future potential for a miniscule shot in the “now”), but I can see that it would be reasonable for someone to have that stance.

    Like I said, I’m not trying to say no GM in the world would buy high on Gortat right now, and I admit that there are reasonable explanations for someone to think that giving up a couple picks and/or a couple of benchwarmers with potential for Gortat would be a good move. I AM saying that I wouldn’t have anything to do with Gortat for more than a lottery-protected pick or preferably an early second-rounder.

  • Danc133

    Please all this rosterbation and coulda shoulda woulda. I laughed out loud. Some goof on a celtics fan post played with the trade machine and people quote it. Some other goof says Paul Pierce is available ( he isn’t). Next thing out is some low rent attorney on here coulda been Jerry Maguire didn’t want to.

    The comments in the article were just about as inane. Lindsay Hunter deserves a shot at being an NBA head coach. On what planet does Hunter even deserve to be 1st assistant coach? Are you all like what 18? Hunter never showed the heart and the desire work hard as a player and he has zero experience. He deserves a shot yea so do I at happy hour not as a head coach.

    Thanks a bunch for the comic relief I needed a grin.

  • Lauren

    Scott, Marshall is the Suns PG of the future which starts tonight. He will only get better with minutes and experience. He will get 30-40 minutes a game starting tonight. Agree or disagree and why?

  • john

    @Lauren

    I know I’m not Scott, but I don’t believe Marshall will be getting those kind of minutes any time soon. To be honest, I don’t believe he’s an NBA starter, but even if he turns into one, it’s not going to be this year, in my opinion. His shot needs to improve significantly, and he needs to increase his quickness both laterally and downcourt, not to mention his explosiveness, before I’d consider him worthy of significant minutes on an NBA court.

    If it were ME running the team, I’d throw him out there and see what he could do. I just don’t think I’d be pleasantly surprised.

  • Lauren

    John, but don’t you think because Hunter is Marshall’s mentor and he has been working under Hunter before and after practice, sometimes late into the night that Hunter would want to play him. Otherwise, then I would question what has Hunter really been helping him with on these individual sessions.