Phoenix Suns fans are used to bemoaning over Luka Doncic. However, now that Zion Williamson is healthy, they may have another young player to compare Deandre Ayton to.
Are you ready for another unfair comparison for Deandre Ayton? if you’re a Phoenix Suns fan, you likely aren’t, but since you’ve known nothing besides frustration and misery for the last several years, I’m sure you’ll listen anyway.
Finding new avenues to explore our self-loathing; it’s what we do.
On Tuesday night, everyone’s favorite fat guy not constrained by Earth’s gravitational force, Zion Williamson, had himself a night. The Bayou Behemoth notched 31 points, nine rebounds, and five assists to help propel his New Orleans Pelicans over the Portland Trail Blazers.
Ah, Luka. The guy every Phoenix Suns fan loves to watch but hates that he’s not wearing orange and purple. He’s drawn so many envious comparisons to Deandre Ayton since the 2018 draft, the Luka-or-Ayton debate is equally dull and settled.
However, now that Zion Williamson is healthy and playing exactly how everyone hoped and feared he would, there is yet another young player Suns fans can wish Deandre Ayton was. After all, Luka is a guard, but Zion is an agile big man with touch, the same as Ayton.
It wasn’t just Zion’s impressive stat line from last night that jumped out as unique, though. Ayton has put up similar numbers, even far superior numbers to those in a given game. It was his awe-inspiring shot chart.
Monty Williams should post this picture in Ayton’s locker and tell him he has the green light to shoot 3s if his shot chart looks like this. There are so many circles piled on top of each other at the rim, it is hard to tell exactly how many times he dunked on someone head.
The box score, however, shows Zion shot 10-17 on the night and 10-16 from right around the rim. This is the kind of shot chart Phoenix Suns fans would love to see Deandre Ayton have, rather than his typical myriad of circles and Xs spread across an imaginary arc in the 15 to 20 foot range.
What makes Ayton’s tendency to settle for mid range jumpers so frustrating is that everyone knows he’s capable of putting up a game like Zion’s. He did it against the Dallas Mavericks in a game the Phoenix Suns won in domin-AYTON fashion. Maybe the Luka factor played in this performance because after that, he reverted to his mid range comfort zone.
The level-headed take on all Deandre Ayton comparisons is that Ayton is his own person and shouldn’t be held to anyone else’s standard. Granted, as long as Luka keeps being Luka, most Phoenix Suns fans will never heed this advice.
And now, just to add salt to an already gaping wound, it looks like Suns fans might be able to add another young player to their, “If only Deandre would…” tirades.