3. Suns likely to be scouting
The point guard position hasn’t always been a problem for the Phoenix Suns. It just seems that way.
Under former general manager Ryan McDonough, the Suns at one point had an embarrassment of riches at the position. In 2014-15, the Suns added free agent Isaiah Thomas to the combination of point guard they already had in Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe.
The Hydra was a dismal failure. The Suns fell from 48 wins to 39 and by season’s end, Thomas was in Boston and Dragic had been dealt to Miami.
The Suns began last season with a couple of established vets at the position in Bledsoe and Brandon Knight. But Bledsoe was miserable in Phoenix and Knight was injured. Bledsoe was traded early in the season to the Milwaukee Bucks.
By the time this season began, Phoenix was left with journeyman shoot-first, ask-questions-later point guard Isaiah Canaan and rookie second-round picks Elie Okobo and De’Anthony Melton, who was acquired in the trade that sent Knight to the Houston Rockets.
Canaan is the erstwhile starter, having gotten starts in all eight games he’s played and averaging 9.6 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 27.0 minutes per game.
Okobo had one start and is averaging 7.0 points and 2.4 rebounds in 16.9 minutes per game in the seven games he’s played. Melton has been on the Flagstaff shuffle to the G League and has played just two games and 22 minutes.
Shooting guard Devin Booker — as much by necessity as by design — has emerged as the Suns’ top playmaker at 6.7 assists per game. Forward Trevor Ariza (3.8) and center Deandre Ayton (3.4) are also averaging more assists per game than Canaan.
But you can bet the Suns will be watching with interest — and envy — at the Nets’ riches at the position.