April 17, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Phoenix Suns center Hamed Haddadi (98) shoots the ball during the second half against the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center. The Nuggets won 118-98. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Phoenix Suns Report Card: Hamed Haddadi

Hamed Haddadi (Center)

Season stat line (Averages)

Min: 10.7|FG%: 42.7| 3P%: 0| FT%: 51.9%|REB: 3.7|AST: 0.4|BLK: 0.9|STL: 0.2|TO: 1|PTS: 2.8

Matt’s Comments:

Hamed Haddadi reminded me a lot of Lou Amundson, a hardworking, tough nosed, and relentless big man who brings something to the table every time he steps on the hardwood; except Haddadi looks like he can eat good ole Lou for breakfast. Haddadi came to Phoenix as a throw-in in the trade that shipped Sebastian Telfair across the border to Canada.

The big man from Iran became a fan favorite almost immediately as a result of his ultra energized play which spawned the famous phrase/hashtag “WhosYourHaddadi”.  Haddadi was playing out the final year of his contract his season. His contract includes a team-option for the 2013-2014 season which would pay him roughly $1.4 million dollars, but the Suns are likely to decline that option and allow Haddadi to become a free-agent.

Matt’s Grade: B

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Eric’s Comments: 

The Iranian center only played for the Suns for 30 games after being traded from the Memphis Grizzlies to (but never playing for) the Toronto Raptors, then coming to Phoenix a little out of shape. The 7’2” player had to come into the lineup almost right away with the arrival of Haddadi almost coinciding with the Gortat, season-ending injury.

Haddadi has a great demeanor and plays with a smile. One of my favorite parts of this season was a fun game towards the beginning of the Haddadi era, where he shot a 15-footer or so and then smiled, looked at Lindsey Hunter and said, “Was that OK for me to shoot?” Everybody on the team was laughing with him and that demonstrated the team chemistry that Haddadi can foster in such a short amount of time.

With a training camp and some serious time lifting weights in the gym, Haddadi could be a serviceable back-up center in the NBA. He needs to work on his footwork and agility, but I hope the Iranian can stick around as the back-up, even just so I can say, “Who’s your Haddadi?”

Grade: C

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