Phoenix Suns deadline week: 3 best moves

Phoenix Suns (Photo by Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports)
Phoenix Suns (Photo by Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Phoenix Suns, trade deadline
Phoenix Suns, Deandre Ayton (Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) /

Phoenix Suns deadline list item 2: Use other teams’ pursuit.

The Suns clearly have the attention of the rest of the league — and the consistent appearance among the NBA’s top five teams is proof enough. That means NBA GMs have also taken notice and are carefully scrutinizing the Phoenix roster.

If someone wants a veteran influence with a certain set of skills, perhaps E’Twaun Moore, Jevon Carter, Frank Kaminsky or Langston Galloway may provide a fit.

In the paint (non-restricted area shots): 51 percent, No. 1 in the NBA.

Corner 3s: 46.1 percent, second in the NBA (left corner, 44.3 percent, fourth in the league; right corner: 46.6 percent, third in the league).

Midrange: 45.6 percent, fifth in the league.

The only kind of shooting this team needs to improve? The kind that someone such as Hassan Whiteside or JaVale McGee could bring: dunks.

Deandre Ayton continues to work on his strength and assertiveness around the rim, but it’s not moving along to everyone’s satisfaction. Low-post fumbles, uncertainty on point-blank attempts and a resistance to dunking EVERY time he can are among the points of criticism.

To that end, the Suns are only 11th in restricted-area field-goal efficiency (66 percent). Numbers don’t lie; a strong finisher who plays 13-15 minutes a night would provide help.

If Jones is stuck trying to initiate interest in a deal, a move would be to entertain informal discussions with teams much more desperate to do something by Thursday.

The inference is that fans want a quality backup center, some improved defense, some more shooting and perimeter defense. Did we mention interior defense? That, especially.

Phoenix has taken the express elevator from the cellar to top contention in a very short time, escaping the conference’s No. 9-10 rut — the worst place to be for an NBA franchise. The Suns avoided the danger of trying too hard to rush the process and having to take a step back.

Nope, it’s full speed ahead.

The move: Consider strongly every offer — every discussion — and find a way to improve.