Phoenix Suns 2023-24 player grades: Drew Eubanks

The Phoenix Suns didn't have the season they envisioned, but backup big Drew Eubanks did what he could to help.
Phoenix Suns v Denver Nuggets
Phoenix Suns v Denver Nuggets / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages

The Phoenix Suns' 2023-24 season might've ended abruptly, but the team still had some good moments. In those moments, Drew Eubanks was sometimes part of the Suns' bright spots as the backup center. Eubanks finished his first season with the team and showed flashes of what he could do with the limited time he was given.

The Suns acquired the 6-foot-9 center when they traded away Deandre Ayton over the 2023 offseason. There wasn't much expectation from the big man since he'd been mostly a reserve for the previous teams he played for. He was with the Portland Trail Blazers during the 2022-23 season, where he put up decent numbers.

Eubanks averaged 6.6 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.3 blocks. He didn't offer much on the offensive side (until now), and he generally got his points on putbacks and easy baskets from within the painted area. He showed more effort on the defensive end, where he often used his strengths to overpower his matchups, especially when it was time to rebound the ball.

Suns fans generally saw Eubanks as a one-dimensional big on the offensive end, but how did he perform in the season?

The big man started the season strong, as he quickly captivated the fans with his energetic play. Compared to the team's starting center, Jusuf Nurkic, Eubanks showed off an athletic side that the frontcourt lacked. He was aggressive in his approach to the game, which was a breath of fresh air for the team. He also never minded taking one for the team.

The veteran center didn't have outstanding numbers on a nightly basis but he made the most out of the chances he was given. Eubanks looked promising in his first ten games. During that span, the center averaged 7.3 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.5 blocks.

Eubanks was a staple when it came to the highlight reels. Even as a one-dimensional scorer, the center created tons of moments for fans to cheer about. Not only has he blessed us with his offensive strengths, but he also played intelligent defense as well. Throughout the season, he would have games where he looked like he was a better choice at the starting center spot.

But after his first 25 games, he didn't improve and dominate while he played. He remained stagnant and finished with fewer numbers in all categories compared to his previous season with the Blazers. A big part of his subpar production was because he played fewer minutes this season.

Next. Suns may end up bringing back uninspiring point guard next season. Suns may end up bringing back uninspiring point guard next season. dark

Eubanks' numbers slowly declined as the season progressed. While he remained aggressive in scoring the basket, it didn't affect the team's outcome. In the postseason, he never scored double digits and only played three games. His aggression was still present, but his lack of offensive weapons made him a liability against the tough Minnesota Timberwolves team.

There's speculation that he could return to the Suns next season. Eubanks has a $2.6 million player option for the 2024-25 season and is likely to exercise it. Now that fans are aware of what he can do on the floor, the expectations for him could be somewhat realistic.

2023-24 season grade: C