First, let me qualify the rest of this review by disclosing that not much was expected from Haddadi. Hamed was a throw in for a trade that sent Sebastian Telfair to the Toronto Raptors for a second round draft pick. The only reason he played as many minutes as he did, which wasn't many, was due to injuries and leaves of absence to players above him on the depth chart.
I just felt it was somewhat obligatory to preface the rest of this scathing analysis by offering that Hamed's bar was pretty low. Somehow he still managed to crawl under it.
Judging Haddadi based on improvement
As the chart depicts, Haddadi regressed quite declivitously from the 2011-12 season. As I mentioned previously, Hamed just turned 28... which made him 27 during the recently concluded
bloodbath campaign. The fact that a player at that age bottomed out in that fashion is... unsettling. Is it possible that Haddadi could regain his previous form? Quite possible. Does it suggest that scenario is the best possible case moving forward? Quite possibly.
Just because his numbers were worse nearly across the board isn't completely condemning in and of itself, though. Haddadi could have been coming off a
less futile career year. Or not.
While Hamed's numbers in 2011-12 were gaudy compared to other seasons, his performance last season was well below his career averages. Also note that many of those career numbers were drug down by his miserable "contribution" in 2012-13. For instance, Haddadi's career points per 36 for his first four seasons was 12.5, but after five years it has dipped to 11.6. His recent numbers were detrimental to his career averages in many ways.
It is basically unarguable that Haddadi showed significant decline, not improvement.
Judging Haddadi compared to the Suns' other centers
This comparison is probably unfair considering that both of the other two players have significantly better pedigree than Hamed. One is a former multiple time all-star selection and the other is a solid starting center. Hamed, on the other hand, is a career
bench warmer backup.
Obviously those two preponderate Haddadi's less than stellar numbers. To further illustrate this dynamic, he wouldn't even have seen the limited minutes he did if it weren't for unfortunate circumstances. Ironically, I can vaguely remember some whispers that the Suns wouldn't even miss Gortat when he went down to injury. Then Haddadi made a solid contribution in two straight games, including being a major cog in a win against the Rockets. That game was the highlight of Hamed's time as a Sun. Pretty much the only highlight.
The Suns finished the season 4-17 after Gortat's injury. Even worse, they went 2-14 in games Haddadi appeared in.
Judging Haddadi re: Memphis vs. Phoenix
Finally an area where Hamed
is less putrid shines... and by shines I mean is still well below most of his career averages. It's kind of like going from living in a tent to sleeping in a box to taking refuge under a bridge. Sure the bridge looks good compared to the box, and Hamed is a serviceable troll, but the whole situation kind of sucks. Do I come off as being too captious? Well, that's how I roll.
Still, he did increase his production, so give credit where credit is due (just not too much).
Overall Grade: D-
I was going to give Haddadi another grade based on physical appearance, but that just seemed cruel. Haddadi falls somewhere between journeyman and bench towel in terms of his NBA career. He will most likely bounce around for a couple years because of his size despite his glaring lack of basketball skills. I just hope it isn't for the Suns. Even if Channing Frye doesn't come back, Jermaine O'Neal leaves in free agency and Marcin Gortat is traded I still wouldn't want Haddadi as a third string center behind two rookies. His full potential has already been realized, and it makes Markieff Morris look like a gamechanger.
I would rather take a 22 year old big from the D-League on the Powerball-like chance he actually turns into a legitimate NBA player than keep Haddadi around. Buy out his $200,000 and send him on his way. The Suns don't need anymore middle-aged (in terms of NBA years) players with no futures. We've already had enough of that.
Since the current iteration of the Phoenix Suns is on vacation during these playoffs, we at Bright Side thought it would be fun to relive the Suns' exciting 1993 playoff run with recaps of each game. Today, the Suns and Charles Barkley end the Spurs season with a game-ending clincher by Barkley. One of the greatest moments in Suns history.
Boxscore - courtesy of basketball-reference.com
The Phoenix Suns couldn't find a way to win either of their first tries in San Antonio, shooting less than 42% each time and generally wishing they were playing at home.
But in Game 6 in San Antonio, the Suns would not be denied. Specifically, Charles Barkley would not be denied. Barkley posted 28 points, 21 rebounds (21!), 4 assists and 4 steals.
Dan Majerle played every minute of the game, tallying 18 points and 4 rebounds while defending like a madman. KJ had 18, 8 and 3 steals. A "big" surprise was Oliver Miller. The Big O put up 12 points, 5 rebounds and a huge FIVE blocks along with 2 steals. When you get contributions like that, it's easier to win on the road.
But this was Barkley's show.
For more coverage of the 1993 playoff run, including quotes and recollections, check out azcentral.com's band of Suns-covering dudes and dudettes!
It's lotto week!
The last couple of weeks have provided Suns fans with next to zero news, despite this being one of the Suns' most important offseasons in franchise history. Clearly, new GM Ryan McDonough is not all about flash and sound bytes. He'd rather just pick the right people - coaches and players - to move this franchise forward.
Tuesday night, Suns fans will finally find out what all this angst for the past few years has brought on the Suns franchise. While it's just about random bouncing balls, fans will undoubtedly apply the results to some version of 'karma'. If the Suns lose ground (ie. pick 5-7), then the franchise is now cursed. If the Suns gain ground (ie. 1-3) then it's the basketball gods laughing at us since this is the worst Top-3 draft in years. This draft is heavy on depth but lacks any surefire superstars at the top.
For luck, the Suns are sending Lon Babby to the show.
In another lottery, the Suns are soon going to pick from a pile of up-and-coming assistant coaches to lead this team into the next few years. Expect the hire to be a guy who embraces analytics and is willing to take a job likely to produce 50-60 losses in the next 12 months. The coach will be growing with the team, much like Monty Williams in New Orleans (still respected despite horrific loss counts) and hopefully not like Mike Dunlap in Charlotte (fired after one season).
Rumor has it that the Suns want a coach in place for individual player workouts in prep for the draft, and the sooner the better. The problem with that is some of the best options - Brian Shaw (Indiana), Mike Budenholzer (Spurs), Lionel Hollins and Dave Joerger (Grizzlies) - are all coaching for at least 1-2 more weeks and possible right up until mere days before the draft.
An inquiry to Lon Babby about the timing of a hiring went unanswered, so we don't know if the Suns are willing to wait until mid-June to hire their next coach.
The hot assistants available at this moment include J.B. Bickerstaff and Kelvin Sampson (Rockets), Jeff Hornacek (Jazz), Quin Snyder (Russia/Lakers) and Steve Clifford (Lakers). Suns GM Ryan McDonough used to work with Rockets GM Daryl Morey, so you can expect some real talk between them about the two Rockets guys.
Will the Suns choose from that letter group, or wait patiently for the playoffs to end?
Will they surprise us with someone we haven't heard of?
Or will they keep Lindsey Hunter, who got an interview last week?
No word yet on the profile of pick the Suns want in June.
Smart money says that's because there's not a single untouchable position on the roster, leaving every prospect still on the Suns' board. And that likely won't change with the lottery on Tuesday night. The top picks are so interchangeable that we won't know who "won" the draft for at least a year, if not three.
If McDonough can pick out a future star like he did Rajon Rondo in 2006 (was drafted 21st but Celtics had him in the top 2), then we are in good shape. That's the real key to the draft. Have the draft position and player-evaluation talent to pick the best of the bunch.
No word of workouts in Phoenix, or even of favorites from the Combine last weekend. Heck, we don't even know who the Suns interviewed among the top talents.
Ok, I'm done rambling about absolutely nothing. No news is no news.