Phoenix Suns Player Grades After First Half of the Season

Phoenix Suns (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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Phoenix Suns
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Mid-Season Grades for the Phoenix Suns: Back End Bench Guys

Filling out the team’s roster, these guys rarely come across chances to make a big impact on the game. With that in mind, their grades go as follows.

Frank Kaminsky – 10.4 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 1.4 APG (.535/.333/.900)

With Frank Kaminsky playing the best basketball of his career earlier this season, the stress reaction which he suffered in mid-autumn came as a real heartbreaker.

Frank the Tank’s status for the rest of the year remains unknown, but if he stays sidelined, he sure gave Suns fans some great moments, specifically his 31-point game against the Portland Trail Blazers.

Grade: B+

Elfrid Payton – 3.3 PPG, 2.2 APG, 2.0 RPG (.394/.286/.393)

Elfrid Payton sticks out like a sore thumb on this over-achieving Phoenix team. While Payton only plays 11.0 minutes each contest, he still finds himself averaging career-lows in points and assists on a per 36 minutes scale.

From the field, three, and the charity stripe, his percentages are all career-lows. Hats off to James Jones for snagging Aaron Holiday right before the trade deadline passed, because with Paul and Payne injured, you do not want this guy running your offense.

I typically save “F” scores for guys who play this poorly and influence the locker rom in a negative way. So with respect to Payton’s professionalism as an eight-year veteran, I’ll spare him with a passing grade.

Grade: D-

Landry Shamet – 7.4 PPG, 1.6 APG, 1.9 RPG (.370/.353/.852)

Despite coming through with a few big moments here and there, Landry Shamet has failed in his role to serve as Booker’s primary backup.

While his health remains one issue, his inability to hit shots is far more glaring one. Meant to be a sharpshooter at the very least, Shamet cannot connect on much this year, putting up career-lows in field goal and 3-point percentage.

Phoenix needs Shamet as a floor spacer, and he still remains a guy you like having out on the court for that reason, but regardless, he needs to do better.

Grade: C-

Ish Wainright – 1.9 PPG, 1.3 RPG, (.362/.290/.429)

How about some love for the Ish Wagon? Being the last guy on Phoenix’s bench and signed to a two-way deal, he averages just 7.4 minutes per game.

But with the Suns dealing with their fair share of injuries this season, he still found some court time, dropping 10 points on the San Antonio Spurs a few weeks ago while playing a “small ball” center role.

Wainright’s overall numbers will remain low given his rotation spot, but percentages are always something one can improve upon, where Wainright still leaves a lot to be desired.

Grade: C