Phoenix Suns: 3 Things JaVale McGee Brings to the Table

Phoenix Suns, JaVale McGee. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Phoenix Suns, JaVale McGee. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports /
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We all expected the Phoenix Suns to go after a backup big man during free agency this year, but very few expected them to settle on the polarizing, yet still formidable JaVale McGee.

Playing first for the Cleveland Cavaliers, and later the Denver Nuggets last year, McGee averaged 7.3 points and 5.2 rebounds per game. Rounding out his 13th season as a pro, the journeyman played slightly under 15.0 minutes per game between both teams.

Even though McGee rarely took the floor during Denver’s playoff series with the Suns, he still raised some eyebrows while doing so. During Game 4, McGee snatched seven boards, five points, and a blocked shot during a 20 minute run, granted to him after league officials ejected MVP Nikola Jokic.

A few days before it, McGee took the floor for with only a few minutes to play during a contest already well decided, but still played incredibly hard while doing so. His hustle left an impression on Chris Paul, who even reached out to McGee after the game to express his respect.

McGee could not keep Denver’s season alive with his efforts, but still managed to secure his own future during the bout, with his good impression on the Suns likely coming as the driving factor behind their choice to extend him a contract.

The deal in place goes for only one season, paying McGee $5 million dollars. Coming as a very team friendly agreement, the contract poises to keep the Suns under the luxury tax for now, working a near-veteran’s minimum deal.

But with the ink drying overnight, we know cannot help but wonder what exactly McGee can bring to the Suns. Taking into account both is basketball skillset and presence as a seasoned veteran, these three things stand out amongst the rest.