5 Reasons Why Phoenix Suns Were Wise to Match Deandre Ayton Offer

Phoenix Suns, Deandre Ayton (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns, Deandre Ayton (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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Phoenix Suns, Deandre Ayton
Phoenix Suns, Deandre Ayton. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

Deandre Ayton Provides All-Star Value for the Phoenix Suns

Per 75 possessions, Ayton averaged 21 PTS on 65.6 TS. In the playoffs, that scoring remained at an elite 23 PTS/75 on 65.3% TS. Only Nikola Jokić was a more efficient 20+ PTS scorer last season.

He’s an extremely talented interior scorer, with elite finishing and great post play (he may have the best hook shot in the game). He’s one of the best screeners and rollers in the NBA, and his mid-range shot is heavily underrated, as he shot 56% from there last season. His offense simply isn’t able to be replicated by a random rim-running center.

His rebounding is critical, grabbing 12.5 per 75 last season. He ranked 12th in REB%, and his defense is very good from the center position. While his blocks may not stand out (only 0.8 per 75), his rim contests and shot alteration are elite.

Phoenix’s defense ranked top-3 in the league, and Ayton was a large reason why. Ayton can also guard the the perimeter and the pick-and-roll fairly well, which is crucial in today’s NBA. Switching ability and defensive versatility are some of the most important traits that teams look for in players; this is especially valuable in big men, who are often played off the floor in these high-leverage situations.

Various impact metrics view Ayton as a top 30-40 player in the NBA, and I have to agree. He’s only 23-years old, and he has great upside – he just has to be utilized in Phoenix’s schemes more often.