PHOENIX — Lindsey Hunter heard the gist of Michael Beasley’s comments following the loss to the Warriors on Friday. Beasley said he stopped listening to everyone including his coaches, but Hunter isn’t taking what the forward says too seriously.
“Consider the source. That’s Mike,” Hunter said, smiling. “All I know is that he has to listen what he’s supposed to do defensively or he won’t play. If he’s not listening (laughs), he better figure out how to learn what we’re doing defensively.”
Considering Beasley is playing a good number of minutes – and clutch ones at that – it appears that he is indeed understanding his coach’s defensive philosophies.
“For Mike to say he doesn’t listen to anybody,” Hunter joked, “we don’t listen to Mike.”
Garrett returns to Phoenix
Suns rookie guard Diante Garrett played in one game for the Bakersfield Jam on Saturday night in order to be playoff eligible for Phoenix’s D-League affiliate. He scored 32 points, added six rebounds and six assists, but also turned the ball over eight times.
While he was still returning from his assignment during the Suns’ game against the Hornets on Sunday, Garrett will travel with the team to Houston and Dallas on April 9-10. Theoretically, he could then make a short jump to Austin, Texas, for an April 11 playoff opener for the Jam against the Austin Toros.
Update: Diante Garrett arrived to the pregame warmup about 12 minutes before gametime.
The good and the bad
Hunter on the positives during his time leading the Suns: “Watching Wesley Johnson, you know, gain some confidence. To see the way Goran (Dragic) has played has been great to see. And to watch Kendall (Marshall) grow and continue to see what he needs to work on. Those things have been really good for us.”
Hunter on the bad: “I think a lot of times for us we would like to – and I know it’s hard to do with such a short period of time – is really have a better defensive identity.”
O’Neal out with a shin injury
Backup center Jermaine O’Neal won’t play on Sunday against the Hornets because of a swollen shin. O’Neal scored in double-figures three games in a row and against Golden State put up 15 points, nine rebounds and two blocks.