NBA Free Agency: Who do the Suns go after?by Fabian Ardaya on Jul. 01, 2013, under Phoenix Suns
It’s July 1st. Free agency is upon us. Who will the Suns sign? Who should they go after? Here’s my shortlist of players the Suns should go after:
JOSH SMITH, 6’9” SF/PF
2012-13’ STATS: 17.5 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 4.2 APG, 46.5% FG, 30.3% 3PT, 17.82 PER
FORMER TEAM: ATLANTA HAWKS
POSSIBLE LANDING SPOTS: BOSTON CELTICS, CLEVELAND CAVALIERS, LOS ANGELES LAKERS (SIGN-AND-TRADE), SACRAMENTO KINGS, SAN ANTONIO SPURS
Easily the biggest wild card of this year’s free agent class, Smith could be just the shot in the arm that the Suns need. While often criticized for his outside shooting (and his desire to take so many outside shots), Smith is an incredible athlete who can rebound, block shots, score, and run the floor. He would easily become the most well-rounded player on the roster and would give Phoenix a direction with which to take this franchise. At 27 years old, he is about to enter his prime years, and is a player to build around for a quick rebuild.
NATE ROBINSON, 5’9” PG
2012-13’ STATS: 13.1 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 4.4 APG, 43.3% FG, 40.5% 3PT, 17.43 PER
FORMER TEAM: CHICAGO BULLS
POSSIBLE LANDING SPOTS: CHICAGO BULLS, DALLAS MAVERICKS, NEW ORLEANS PELICANS, UTAH JAZZ
As I have detailed in a previous article, Robinson would be a great fit for Phoenix, as his scoring ability and personality would be a hit with fans and help to regenerate interest in the team. Robinson also will get a chance to flourish for a team that needs offensive punch. Robinson gives the franchise a face and would fit in with the fast-paced style of the past. While the hiring of Jeff Hornacek leaves in question just what type of system the team will run, Robinson could at worst be an energy guy off of the bench who can jumpstart an offense.
DARREN COLLISON, 6’0” PG
O.J. MAYO, 6’4” SG
2012-13’ STATS: (Collison) 12.0 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 5.1 APG, 47.1% FG, 35.3% 3PT, 16.37 PER
(Mayo) 15.3 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 4.4 APG, 44.9% FG, 40.7% 3PT, 14.00 PER
FORMER TEAM: DALLAS MAVERICKS
POSSIBLE LANDING SPOTS: ATLANTA HAWKS, CHICAGO BULLS (Mayo), DALLAS MAVERICKS, INDIANA PACERS (Collison), MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES, PHILADELPHIA 76ERS (Mayo), UTAH JAZZ
Both of these players are very similar: both are combo guards with great quickness and a track record of success. Yet both players have yet to really maintain themselves over a full season or prove themselves as a top option on offense. Both are former top picks who could find a niche in Phoenix as a scorer and combo guard for a stagnant offense. Phoenix would also give both the opportunity to become top option and assume a star role.
Sefko: Why there’s almost no chance Darren Collison will be with the Mavericks next season http://t.co/tBtSEP9O6e
— Sports Bard (@sportsbard) June 25, 2013
J.R. SMITH, 6’6” SG 2012-13’ STATS: 18.1 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 2.7 APG, 42.2% FG, 35.6% 3PT, 17.67 FORMER TEAM: NEW YORK KNICKS POSSIBLE LANDING SPOTS: ATLANTA HAWKS, CHICAGO BULLS, DALLAS MAVERICKS, NEW YORK KNICKS, PHILADELPHIA 76ERS, UTAH JAZZ J.R. is a guy who finally seemed to unlock his potential last year in New York, as his new motivation on defense and new offensive mentality led to him being named the Sixth Man of the Year. Smith was looking like a max player until his shooting slump after being suspended for elbowing Celtics guard Jason Terry in the face, which dragged on until the Knicks were eliminated in the second round by the Indiana Pacers. Smith is a volume scorer who could become the face of the franchise, a title he has not yet known in his career. In Phoenix he could forget his troubled past and just play basketball without being in the hot lights of New York.
J.R. Smith will be a free agent after reportedly declining his option with the Knicks. http://t.co/3aYGxu2PhA
— CBSSports.com (@CBSSports) June 4, 2013
ANDREW BYNUM, 7’0” C
2011-12’ STATS*: 18.7 PPG, 11.8 RPG, 1.9 BLKPG, 55.8% FG, 23.00 PER
FORMER TEAM: PHILADELPHIA 76ERS
POSSIBLE LANDING SPOTS: ATLANTA HAWKS, CHARLOTTE BOBCATS, DALLAS MAVERICKS, HOUSTON ROCKETS, PHILADELPHIA 76ERS
*= Missed entire 2012-13’ season after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery
Before the whole knee fiasco of this past season, Andrew Bynum was a very talented albeit troubled player. The Suns would be able to get an All-Star quality big man at a low price in Bynum. The famed Sun’s training staff led by Aaron Nelson has already helped the careers of Shaquille O’Neal, Grant Hill, and Steve Nash. Why not Bynum? It may be a risk, but Bynum gives the Suns the highest possible reward.
Bynum set to resume workouts next week: Philadelphia 76ers center Andrew Bynum has completed his rehabilitation… http://t.co/qoX5C0ErJB
— NBA Breaking News (@NBABNN) June 25, 2013
TYREKE EVANS (RFA), 6’6” PG/SG/SF
2012-13’ STATS: 15.2 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 3.5 APG, 47.8% FG, 33.8% 3PT, 18.16 PER
FORMER TEAM: SACRAMENTO KINGS
POSSIBLE LANDING SPOTS: CHICAGO BULLS, DALLAS MAVERICKS, NEW YORK KNICKS, SACRAMENTO KINGS, UTAH JAZZ
Evans has been a huge question mark ever since he entered the league. Did he peak in his rookie season? Why are his numbers regressing every year? What would happen if he played for a stable organization? All of these questions would remain if he signs with Phoenix, but there are his positives. He’s a gifted player and scorer who could still have otherworldly potential. The worst-case scenario would be a scorer and secondary ball handler for a team that desperately needs one.
— Knicks Plus (@KnicksPlus) June 20, 2013