Smooth like butter ...

The Phoenix Suns' summer league team not only got the win in tonight's finale, they played their best, most balanced game.

Markieff Morris put on a show tonight scoring 25 points and grabbing 11 rebounds. Morris not only shot the ball more efficiently, going 10-17, he also made some really nice strong moves to the basket, showed great footwork in the post, and also made some very difficult shots over defenders that didn't look like they had a chance.

But the story of tonight's game belongs to Kendall Marshall. Marshall brought his A-game on offense tonight scoring 15 points off of some strong drives to the basket and also some threes. Marshall shot 6-10 from the field overall including 3-4 from downtown.

Not only that, but Marshall really showed his biggest strength with some great assists. He made some awesome go ahead passes to find teammates streaking down the floor to score at the other end...and we also saw more passes made after penetrating into the lane and finding the open man. Marshall finished with a summer league high 10 assists tonight to go along with his 15 points, 4 rebounds, and a team high +19 as well ... Atta boy K-Butter!

Continue reading after the jump for more on tonight's action ...

As for the rest of the Summer Suns, they did ok too. Garcia scored 12 points off 3-4 shooting, Landry scored 15 points off 5-10 shooting, Tucker grabbed 9 boards and scored 10 points off 5-8 shooting, and Sims (who never saw a shot attempt he didn't like) scored 13 points off 6-11 shooting.

But what about the three players I thought had the best chance to get a training camp invite (besides Garcia), well...let's just say they better hope they already proved what they were capable of before tonight. Garrett scored only 2 points, both off free throws, and went 0-4 from the field and also netted 0 assists. Matt Gatens was a DNP, and Lighty scored only 4 points off of 2-5 shooting.

Although for Lighty, something should be said for how he at least held Josh Selby in check a after he got off to a fast start scoring 11 points in the first quarter. Lighty was brought in shortly after and immediately made it much more difficult for him. I don't recall Selby actually scoring on Lighty while he was guarding him, but Lighty only played around 14 minutes while Selby played nearly 30, so he still ended up with 23 points. I still think Lighty has a good chance of getting a training camp invite based on his impressive perimeter defense and spot up shooting ability...but time will tell.

And with that, the Summer Suns' end their Vegas trip with a record of 2-3, and ending on a high note with a win over a pretty good Grizzlies team. Markieff was unquestionably the best player on the team, and Marshall finally showed (at least I hope) why so many people, including myself, are so high on him. Training camp won't begin until October, but Markieff and Marshall looked like they already developed some chemistry together over the last week. Let's hope they can both build on that and continue to improve as they get ready for the regular season.

For those of you who missed seeing the game live, it will be broadcast tonight at 10pm P.S.T. on NBA TV. This is one you may not want to miss.

Here is some post game audio courtesy of our own Seth Pollack:

Majerle post 072112

Morris post 072112


Finish strong!

In what has been a mostly underwhelming performance thus far, the Phoenix Suns will look to close out their NBA Summer League appearance with a win tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies at 7p.m P.S.T.

The Grizzlies are led by PG/SG Josh Selby, a former Kansas standout who has had an outstanding summer league thus far averaging 29 points per game while shooting an incredible 61% from the field...leading the entire league in scoring. Their other guards Jeremy Pargo (12 pts, 5 ast), Tony Wroten (10 pts, 5 ast, 5 rbs) and even ex-Sun Matt Janning (8 pts) have also been consistent contributors as well. The key for the Suns will be to stop the Grizzlies' back court if they are going to pull out a win tonight.

As for the Summer Suns', their biggest issue has been their lack of ability to score points on offense. So far they have averaged only 40% from the field. Worse yet, if you take away their first and only good game in which they shot an efficient 52% against the New York Knicks, they have averaged a dismal 36% over their last three games...yuck!

It's not as if they haven't been able to get open looks or even open lanes all the way to the basket...they have...but for whatever reason this team just hasn't been able to finish plays by putting points on the score board. Even the team's leading scorer and best player, Markieff Morris, has struggled shooting only 37% from the field overall.

Without going into the possible reasons for such a lackluster offensive performance, and there are many, let's just say that if the 1-3 Suns are going to close out their summer schedule with a win against the 2-1 Memphis Grizzlies, they will need to be much more efficient.

Continue reading after the jump for a brief look at the stats from both teams, as well as some players you may want to keep an eye on as they compete for a training camp invite

Here are the stats for the Suns thus far:

2012 suns Summer League Averages
Name G GS MPG FG% 3p% FT% OFF DEF RPG APG SPG BPG TO PF PPG↓↓
Markieff Morris 4 4 29.3 0.369 0.214 0.885 3.3 6.3 9.5 1.8 0.8 2.5 2 4.8 18.5
DeShawn Sims 4 4 21 0.436 0.667 1 1.5 2.3 3.8 0.3 0 0.5 0.3 1 10.3
Marcus Landry 4 1 20 0.429 0.4 0.5 0.5 2.8 3.3 0.3 0.3 0 0.3 2.3 10.0
Charles Garcia 4 4 21.5 0.48 0 0.563 1.5 2.3 3.8 0.3 1 0 0.5 5.3 8.3
Matt Gatens 3 1 10 0.5 0.556 0 0 1 1 0.3 0 0 0 1 6.3
Diante Garrett 4 1 16.3 0.476 0 1 0.3 1.3 1.5 3.3 1 0 0.8 0.3 5.3
Erving Walker 4 1 13.8 0.5 0.5 0 0.3 1.3 1.5 1 0 0 1.8 1.3 5.0
PJ Tucker 4 0 19.3 0.45 0 0.333 2.5 3 5.5 1 0 0.3 2 1.5 4.8
Kendall Marshall 3 3 31.7 0.2 0 0.75 1 1 2 5.3 2.3 0 3.3 3 4.3
David Lighty 3 1 17 0.4 0.5 0.5 0.3 0.3 0.7 0.3 0.3 0 1.3 1 4.0
Matt Howard 3 0 8.3 0.286 0.333 0.75 0.3 0.7 1 0 0 0.3 0.3 1 2.7
Patrick O?Bryant 4 0 8.5 0.4 0 0.5 0.8 2.3 3 0.3 0 0.8 0.8 2 2.3
Jacob Pullen 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Doron Perkins 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Akos Keller 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Team Averages 200 0.408 0.338 0.716 11.8 23.5 35.2 12.5 5.0 4.2 12.75 22.75 77.2


Here are the stats for the Grizzlies:

2012 grizzlies Summer League Averages
Name G GS MPG FG% 3p% FT% OFF DEF RPG APG SPG BPG TO PF PPG↓↓
Josh Selby 3 3 28.7 0.609 0.731 0.857 0 1.7 1.7 1.3 2.7 0 1.7 2.7 29.0
Jeremy Pargo 2 2 26 0.333 0.222 0.889 0 0 0 5.5 2.5 0 2 3 12.0
Tony Wroten 3 1 22.3 0.37 0.333 0.8 2 2.7 4.7 4.7 0.7 0.7 3.7 2.7 10.0
Deon Thompson 3 2 24.3 0.5 0 0.5 2.7 3 5.7 0.3 1 1.3 1 2 8.7
Jerome Randle 2 0 18.5 0.438 0.5 0.25 0 1 1 3 1 0 0.5 2 8.5
Matt Janning 3 3 24.3 0.45 0.333 0.75 0.7 2.7 3.3 1.3 1 0.7 1 1.7 8.0
Mitchell Watt 3 3 17.3 0.529 0 0.8 1.7 3 4.7 0.3 0.7 1.3 0.7 2 7.3
Hank Thorns 1 0 3 0.4 0 0.75 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 7.0
Xavi Rey 3 1 13 0.545 0 0 0.7 1.3 2 0 0.3 0.7 0 2.3 4.0
Courtney Sims 1 0 15 0.333 0 0 1 4 5 0 0 1 1 3 4.0
Terrance Henry 2 0 9 0.333 0 0.5 0.5 1.5 2 0 0 0.5 0.5 2 2.0
Cam Tatum 2 0 12.5 0.143 0.2 0 0 1 1 1 0 0 1 1 1.5
Adrian Banks 3 0 7 0.5 0 0 0 0.3 0.3 0.3 0 0 0 0.7 1.3
Jon Kreft 3 0 12 0.333 0 0.333 1 1.7 2.7 0.3 0.3 0 2 3.7 1.0
Oscar Bellfield 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Kevin Clark 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Josh Magette 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Ricky Sanchez 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Seth Tarver 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Alan Voskuil 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0
Ryan Allen 1 0 3 0 0 0 2 0 2 2 0 0 0 0 0.0
Team Averages 200 0.462 0.460 0.687 10.0 20.3 30.3 15.7 9.0 5.3 13.67 24.00 89.0

We know that Markieff Morris and Kendall Marshall are already under contract with the Suns, and that Charles Garcia has already been given a training camp invite. But despite a generally bad summer league performance overall, there have been a few bright spots on the roster who could also join the Suns once training camp begins in October.

Players to watch during the last game:

Diante Garrett, PG- Garrett started off his summer league performance with a bang against the New York Knicks while filling in as the starter for Kendall Marshall who was still working out his contract. Garrett posted an impressive 8 pts, 10 asts, and 5 rebounds in his debut and helped lead the team, along with Markieff Morris, to their only win of the summer thus far. Since Marshall's return, Garrett has seen only sporadic minutes and has failed to put his stamp on the game the way he did in the first game. Still, his quickness and length, along with his ability to drive the lane and attack the basket, are impressive attributes that could warrant the Suns giving him another look.

David Lighty, SG - Overall, I've been generally disappointed in Lighty's offensive performance in the summer league. Lighty has averaged only 4 pts in his 17 min per game, which is low for him--even though he is considered much better defensively than offensively. But he hasn't really shot the ball poorly; averaging 40% from the field and 50% from three. Lighty has always been an efficient spot-up 3pt shooter dating back to his career at Ohio St., and this has continued at summer league even though he hasn't taken many shots. Of course, the most notable aspect of Lighty's game remains his defense. He is easily the best perimeter defender on the team, and this one skill-set the real Phoenix Suns will sorely miss after the loss of Grant Hill. With his ability to knock down three's and shut down perimeter scoring and penetration, the Suns may be interested in keeping him around.

Matt Gatens, SG - Gatens may not be well known on the roster, but his stats speak for themselves. Although he's only averaged 10 min per game, he has made the most of his opportunity averaging 6 pts by doing what he does best, knocking down threes. Gatens is the best three point shooter on the team, averaging an impressive 56% from downtown. This is no abberation either. Gatens was the leading scorer on his Iowa Hawkeye's team averaging 15 points per game last season while shooting 41% from three and 47% from the field overall. Gatens could earn a training camp invite based on his shooting alone to be a specialty player in the same vein as Steve Novak. Let's see if he can continue his hot streak and finish the summer league strong.

Other than these three players, I would be very surprised if anyone else on the roster made enough of an impression to be considered. Let's hope we see a little more of these three tonight to see how they do.

Like last night, this game will not be televised live on NBA TV, so if you want to see the game live you will have to purchase the NBA broadband package which has now been reduced to only $4.99. You can sign up here. If not, you can also see the game when it is televised later tonight on NBA TV at 10p.m. P.S.T./1a.m. E.S.T.




This is a short fanpost with short videos of the players that our roster will have this season, it is nice to know what kind of players you are going to watch everynight, don´t you try to deny you don´t watch every single game, Scola and Beasly are really new interesting and exciting additions to this team, i will love to see them on court. so go through the links and enjoy !

First let us begin with SuperCoolBeasly

Beasly the best teammate to have

Beasly goes for 40

Beasly a very vocal leader

Beasly is a talented rapper

And singer too !

But back to Basketball, Take that Bosh!

Take that Gasol!

And if you miss Childress Fro

Michael Fo Da WIN!

Let´s move to Dragic now : )

The return of the Dragon

Learning to breath fire

A fan favourite, Sorry San Antonio

From Slovenia to Chilly

Dragic Tears the Fakers

Fisher got schooled by Dragic- Thanks to omnicious for bringing it up.

Luis Scola ; )

Gets owned by Fisher.

Gets stomp by Love.

But whatever Scola goes for 44 points

Scola is extreme

Scola wrecks the Fakers too

Scola owns Derrick Rose

Scola Wrecks the Spurs too oh boy !

Markief Morris !

Owns Blake Griffin c :

Morris Drops 21 in 31

The heat can´t handle Morris

Which one was your favorite? Scola goes for 44 was mine : )


PHOENIX — At this point in the offseason the Phoenix Suns desperately needed a shooting guard and Shannon Brown badly needed a team. And thus one of the most polarizing Suns players (based on...

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Mar. 18, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Shannon Brown (26) puts up a shot against the Houston Rockets guard Courtney Lee (5) and forward Chase Budinger (10) during the second half at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Rockets 99-86. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Stewart-US PRESSWIRE.

July 20: I posted this article just over two months ago. Basically, the conclusion is that Eric Gordon is better than all the options, but that Mayo, Lee and Hill were NOT statistically any more valuable than Shannon Brown.

Gordon got 4 yrs, $58 mil; Hill got 5 yrs, $40 mil; Lee got 4 yrs, $20+ mil; Mayo got 2 yrs, $9 mil; Brown got 2 yrs, $7 mil (only $5.25 mil guaranteed, and with stretch provision could be as little as .58 mil in 2013 if released).

Let's walk down memory lane.

-----------------------------

Originally posted on May 19, 2012:

As we anticipate the free agent frenzy that engulfs the lives of players, front offices and fans throughout the NBA, we fall in love with player A or player B on another team while discounting the guy we saw play nearly every minute of the prior season.

We look at player A and say "I just love ____ part of player A's game! If this guy just gets better at ______, he could be awesome with the Suns!" We all assume that player A will fit in perfectly with the Suns, and that he will be just as interested in improving ______ as we are.

The Suns need more scoring and playmaking from the perimeter. Even Steve Nash, at the end of the season in context of what needs to improve for him to return next season, mentioned the real need for playmakers. He understands that the Suns offense stagnates when he is resting or playing off the ball or being trapped and forced to give the ball up to the mismatch.

With Shannon Brown a unrestricted free agent and Jared Dudley truly being more of a swingman than a pure shooting guard, the Suns have an obvious opening or two at the shooting guard spot.

One early ranking of overall free agents mentions nearly a dozen shooting guards, but only a few match the Suns' desire for youth and "value", having no intention to overpay a free agent this summer if at all possible. To fit the criteria of young prospects, all of these guys are restricted free agents who have yet to reach their prime years.

Some rules I followed, to determine the 5 potential signings here:

  • I looked only at the one ranking of free agents, so if I missed anyone it was an oversight due to lack of effort on my part and all blame should be foisted on me as a result.
  • I have purposely focused only on the shooting guard prospects in this article, since the Suns simply have to sign someone to share 48 minutes with Jared Dudley.
  • I have ignored older players, such as Vince Carter, Mo Williams and (not listed because he hasn't opted out yet) Jamal Crawford
As you'll see, the pickings are slim at shooting guard this summer. Much more plentiful are point guards, small forwards and bigs, though most of the best of those are RFAs as well. All numbers are from the 2011-12 season except for Eric Gordon's due to his injury.

Suns-sg-prospects_medium

Click on the pic to make it bigger, or click on this link to the page on basketball-reference.com.

In looking through the prospective free agents this summer, I found 5 potential signings and compared them to the Suns' Jared Dudley.

I included Dudley here for reference because (a) the new player would ideally be a better player than Dudley or the Suns are just treading water and (b) because Dudley makes $4.25 million per season for the next 3 years.

Certainly, Eric Gordon will and SHOULD make more than Dudley. He is a better scorer and better passer, though not a better shooter or rebounder. But simply, Gordon can create and make his own shots, and he is 3 years younger than Dudley.

But what about the others?

George Hill is a better passer than Dudley, a better defender and at least as good a shooter, but he is small (6'2") and is a better fit as a combo guard coming off the bench. Hill is a winner - an efficient scorer and defender - but is he any better than the role players the Suns already have? Hill is, at best, a 5th- to 8th-best player on a contending team. The Suns boast 5 of those already.

Courtney Lee profiles similarly to George Hill. He can shoot and defend, but is a bit undersized. His ceiling, as well, appears to be a 5th- to 8th-best player on a contender.

O.J. Mayo? He numbers look awfully pedestrian is this context of being compared to peers. He is a scorer and can pass pretty well, but is not a good shooter or defender. He is still young though, so his potential may still be tapped by a team willing to give him the minutes. The talent is there, but is the drive?

Which brings us back to Shannon Brown.

Brown wants to return and has already finished his half-season adjustment to a new team and a new offense. He knows the Suns, the staff, the defensive and offensive schemes and, especially, his role. His second half was of high quality, and given the options out there that fit the Suns' criteria he just might be the best one.

If they can get Eric Gordon this summer, that's great. He's young and talented and worth a whole lot of money.

But if Gordon is gone, there is no need to overpay for the next best option. One of Brown, Mayo, Lee or Hill will come reasonably this summer and will provide roughly the same value that Brown gave us this past season.

The Suns can then spend their money on a PF (Brook Lopez?) or SF (Nic Batum). Or just wait until 2013 to break the bank.


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