Phoenix Suns free agency: Best wing targets for 2020 offseason

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Phoenix Suns free agency wing targets: Justin Holiday the best option

Though it is true that Alec Burks would be a solid addition, he isn’t the first wing that the Suns should sign, that should be Justin Holiday from the Indiana Pacers.

Holiday is a small forward, that can also play shooting guard which fills two immediate needs if they can’t sign Burks, and like Mikal Bridges, he can guard the 2, 3, and 4 positions. “RAPTOR” scores him 0.1 on offense, and 2.1 on defense. Justin Holiday actually has better “RAPTOR” numbers than Mikal Bridges, Cam Johnson, and Kelly Oubre on both sides of the ball.

The Suns should do whatever it takes to sign Justin Holiday, he is a deadly corner 3-point shooter hitting 43 percent of those shots while hitting 51 percent of his unassisted pull-up 3-point shots this past season.

While his shooting is spectacular, it is his defense that puts him above the rest, he’s the player on the Pacers that guards the other team’s best player, showing that Holiday is a player the Phoenix Suns second team could surely use.

As I have said before, RAPTOR and Real Plus-Minus are both team-based stats that are isolated to a particular player and how they work in unison with their team. Obviously, stats are influenced in part by the four teammates around that player, and the Pacers have good defensive players around Holiday.

The Indiana Pacers were third in points allowed defense, steals, and fourth in defense against 3-point shots, while the Suns came in at 20th, 20th, and 21st respectively in those categories, so the Phoenix Suns should be signing one of the best defenders from one of the best defensive teams in the NBA.

But Holiday isn’t just a good team defender, he’s a very good defender in general. He has a 7-foot wingspan and like a good defensive back in football, he has a high defensive IQ and can read the passing lanes with the best of them. He can back off of his man, to essentially guard two players while watching the lane.  If the ball swings to his player he can close out fast like that football defensive back using those long arms to defend his player.

The ESPN Real Plus-Minus more than shows that Holiday can improve the Phoenix Suns overall bench play at the wing position going forward.

— Mikal Bridges #14 RPM
— Justin Holiday #34 FPM
— Kelly Oubre     # 84 FPM

As good as he is, Holiday’s weakness is finishing in the lane, he simply is not that good.  But Justin Holiday checks all the other boxes for the Phoenix Suns as he can play several positions, and in the Suns’ offense Holiday would thrive in an up-tempo, motion offense that is tailor-made for him and his spot-up threes like the Suns.

PROJECTED FREE AGENT CONTRACT G/F: Justin Holiday 2 years, $6 million per year. I have Holiday in the $6 million to $8 million range, the Suns may need to use the top end of that range to secure Justin Holiday.

Adding Justin Holiday and Alec Burks would be steals for the Phoenix Suns and heads above Jevon Carter and Elie Okobo whom Burks would replace, while Justin Holiday would get most of Mikal’s bench minutes.

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