Yesterday, Steve Nash, Robin Lopez, and Zabian Dowdell were the first players to show up for workouts at the Phoenix Suns facility after the after the NBA lockout was lifted. Today, Grant Hill, Josh Childress, and Channing Frye joined the party along with the other three to get in some practice and use the training facilities as well.
It was expected that players would begin trickling back into the facility as they began arriving back in town, but seeing unrestricted free agent Grant Hill already back in the building, and decked out in Suns' practice gear, certainly seems like a good sign that he will once again don the purple and orange for at least another season.
When interviewed by the media at US Airways Center today, Grant Hill said there was a "Good Chance" that he'll be back with the Suns this year. He also talked about receiving interest from other teams and how it "feels good" to be wanted.
Since contract negotiations are just getting started after teams were first allowed to contact player reps this past Wednesday, Hill was understandably careful not to go into any more detail. He stated that he wanted to "respect the process", which is politician speak for say as little as possible to the media...which is expected while his agent is communicating with teams.
However, with Lon Babby's comments about Hill being the "top priority", Nash's endorsement, and Hill's own expressed desire to stay in Phoenix, one has to believe that all intentions are for Hill to stay put.
Hill's family is also now rooted in Phoenix, and it certainly seems that he is content to eventually ride off into the sunset while staying put in the valley. Not to mention, with less time to visit with other teams and a shortened training camp in order to prepare for a condensed season ahead, it would seem that time is also on The Suns' side to retain Hill; and they could possibly already have a deal in place that's ready to sign on Dec. 9th when free agency officially begins.
[ Update - 12/05/11, 11:18 AM MST ]
According to a new article by David Aldridge on nba.com, Grant Hill has reportedly narrowed down his choices to four teams; the Suns, Clippers, Knicks, and Bulls. Speculation is that Phoenix remains the frontrunner due mostly to Hill's admission that there is a "good chance" that he will re-sign with the Suns, but these other teams are reportedly still being considered. Stay tuned...