The Phoenix Suns were recently part of a massive blockbuster deal involving the Trail Blazers and Milwaukee Bucks. This move saw the long rumored departure of Damian Lillard from the Blazers, with the Bucks sending beloved star Jrue Holiday to the Blazers and the Suns finally trading Deandre Ayton to the Blazers.
This move also saw the Suns pick up a collective of players. While the main piece for the Suns will be Jusuf Nurkic, they also picked up Grayson Allen from Milwaukee. Allen does not have the strongest reputation around the league, with some of his play being considered “dirty.”
But his experience playing for a championship contender year after year will be invaluable.
Allen was a consistent starter for the Bucks during their dominant years, and has proven himself as a great shooter.
Allen is consistent from the three point line, averaging around 40 percent from deep. This could be valuable for the Suns, providing them with another option to spread the floor. However, the Suns have also added a number of players like this.
Phoenix will need to address the number of players they have, with the team being over the allowed limit. The Suns have an overabundance in the shooting guard position with the recent blockbuster trade.
A number of players share the position, including Allen, Devin Booker, Eric Gordon, Damion Lee and Keon Johnson. The Suns will need to decide their rotation with the number of guards they have, making it tricky to see how Allen fits in the rotation.
While Allen was a consistent starter for the Bucks, he will certainly not be starting for the Suns with both Bradley Beal and Booker filling the guard positions in the starting five. This will leave Allen fighting for minutes with Gordon, Johnson and Lee. While Johnson may be used more for a development piece, the Suns acquired Gordon to be their backup and sharp shooter off the bench.
Both Gordon and Allen would provide the same role for the Suns, meaning the pair would be battling for minutes. Based on Gordon’s play for the Bahamas, he could be more favored currently as the sixth man for the team.
Comparing the pair, Gordon averaged 11 points per game this past season for the Clippers on 24 mins per game. Meanwhile, Allen averaged 10.4 points per game for the Bucks in 27 minutes per game. Gordon also shot at a slightly higher percentage than Allen, shooting 46.3 percent, while Allen shot 44 percent per game.
Allen’s slight advantage over Gordon is that he provides that x-factor with the toughness he brings. While he is not going to physically overpower the bigger players, his questionable tactics do show a willingness to leave it all out on the floor for the team.
While opposing fans despised Allen on the Bucks, Milwaukee fans loved him and he is an asset to any team he is on. The shooting guard log jam should become lighter when the team decides which players to let go after the blockbuster trade.
Still, it will be interesting to see what direction the team goes with Allen’s role. While he could certainly be the sixth-man and average around 25 minutes per game, it would all depend on his performance and how well he shines amongst the other guards.