When training camp opened for the Suns earlier this week, multiple reports – including ones from Bob Baum of The Associated Press and Kent Somers of The Arizona Republic – noted that the most pressing issue facing the franchise in the short term was its hole at the point guard spot.
That hasn’t changed within the last few days, with Duane Rankin of The Arizona Republic writing today that it remains unclear which way Suns head coach Igor Kokoskov might be leaning. Shaquille Harrison, De’Anthony Melton, Elie Okobo, and Isaiah Canaan are among the point guards vying for playing time. In comments on Thursday, Kokoskov spoke in general terms about those four players when he addressed the traits he’s looking for from a starting point guard.
“Just being solid overall,” the Suns’ new coach said, per Rankin. “The four guys we’ve brought to this camp, our guys are pretty solid. That’s a quality they’re bringing to this team. Just being solid. We’re not asking for anything extraordinary. Just be solid overall when it comes to defensive stops, when it comes to running the team. Putting the guys in the right spots. The key word is being solid.”
As Rankin outlines in a separate article for The Arizona Republic, Canaan easily has the most NBA experience of the Suns’ four in-house point guards and believes he’s capable of taking the reins as the starter. Canaan continues to make his way back from a broken left ankle that ended his 2017/18 season, and Rankin believes that the veteran will likely get the first crack at the starting job if Phoenix doesn’t trade for a point guard.
Here’s more from around the Pacific:
- Like LeBron James has done in the past, Warriors forward Kevin Durant has decided to sign short-term contracts with opt-outs in order to maximize his flexibility, writes Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area. “I could have easily signed a long-term [contract], but I just wanted to take it season-by-season and see where it takes me,” Durant said earlier this week. The two-time Finals MVP will be eligible for free agency again in 2019, but isn’t talking about that decision at this point.
- Durant’s teammate Klay Thompson will also be eligible for free agency in 2019 and has been more willing to talk about his desire to stay with the Warriors long-term — he reiterated that preference on Thursday, as Nick Friedell of ESPN.com writes. “It’s hard to walk away from something — you were here when it started and yeah, you just want to stay on the train as long as you can,” Thompson said.
- After LeBron James spoke earlier this week about the Lakers having a long way to go before they can seriously challenge the Warriors, Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com explores what “success” might look like for LeBron’s Lakers, this season and beyond.
- Rajon Rondo brings extensive big-game experience and a much-needed “hard edge” to the Lakers, according to Kyle Goon of The Orange County Register.