Analyzing the current Phoenix Suns depth chart

Phoenix Suns Devin Booker Deandre Ayton (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns Devin Booker Deandre Ayton (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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Tyler Johnson Phoenix Suns (Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images)
Tyler Johnson Phoenix Suns (Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images) /

After the draft and before free agency and major trades, let’s break down the Phoenix Suns’ roster so far by position.

Point Guard

Tyler Johnson, Ty Jerome, De’Anthony Melton, Elie Okobo

While I am personally happy that James Jones did not target a point guard at the top of the draft as I had no faith going into it that any of the points that might have been available to the Phoenix Suns were going to be the future at the position, he also did not make any blockbuster trades, at the moment, to reel one in either leaving the roster with a still large hole at it’s arguably most important position.

Fortunately with free agency essentially beginning in in less than a week, he’ll have the opportunity to snag one in that manner or through trade so the draft might only have been an indicator of how he will approach the position this season in that he will be going “big,” rather than re-filling it with more young, inexperienced youth.

Technically, at the moment Devin Booker will likely be the primary call carrier if Jones strikes out with all of the primary targets in trade and free agency, however, if we are to look at the players on the roster from their most natural positions, Tyler Johnson will be the starting point come game one in October.

That is, if Johnson isn’t traded or waived and stretched – both which could occur early in July depending on who the Suns could potentially land.

If Johnson does remain on the roster, he can be a decent veteran contributor if his 3-point shot returns to previous heights.

How the waive and stretch of Tyler Johnson could look. light. Related Story

With a career-high of 38.0% in his second season, Johnson’s averaged 37.1% from beyond the arc in his second through fourth years in the NBA (all with Miami).

Strangely enough, his averaged dropped to 32.1%, a career-low, when he was traded to the Suns.

A higher percentage could obviously be a sign of overall better shooting by the team, and might add up to a few extra wins – although not necessarily too many.

That said, while his shooting took a hit, Johnson did average a career-high 4.2 assists with Phoenix in his 13 games – which actually isn’t too far below Eric Bledsoe‘s career  average of 4.8.

Following Johnson on the depth chart could be rookie Ty Jerome, although he isn’t likely to impact the roster in a great way. Although if his 3-point shooting is carried over from college where he shot 39.2% in three seasons, and a career-high 39.9% (SO CLOSE!) on 198 attempts last season, he will earn himself minutes as a backup whether he first off the bench, or second.

It is possible that Jerome could develop into more of an overall offensive threat in a few years as he averaged 5.5% dimes last season, a career-high, assisting on 32.6% of Virginia’s buckets. Although his likely will not be counted on much this season, his growth is what will decide his fate in the NBA, and primarily with the Phoenix Suns.

Wrapping up the bottom of the depth chart is the second-year combination of Elie Okobo and De’Anthony Melton, players who have big fan bases in Phoenix, must fans having a preference of one over the other.

Personally, I am not a fan of either and would be just fine if neither were back on the roster in 2019-20.

While both were billed as combo-guards who could shoot the lights out upon their acquisitions, Okobo averaged just 29.5% from beyond the arc last season while Melton put up a paltry 30.5%.

I feel like we saw enough to know that they are each third point guards in the NBA at best, and with both earning $1,416,852 next season, they too are both very expendable.

Although I would doubt that they are cut as James Jones can not afford such cap hits, especially if he needs every dollar available to make a big splash in free agency, I also would not be surprised if at least one of them weren’t traded to a team like the Lakers for a future second round pick or added to another trade as throw ins.