Pacific Notes: Suns Practice Facility, Kings, No. 10 Pick, Rubio

In addition to acquiring new All-NBA point guard Chris Paul, the Suns have also started to work out in the team’s brand-new $45MM practice facility, the Verizon 5G Performance Center, for the 2020/21 season, as Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic details.

The 53,000 square foot facility will be used by both the Suns and the Phoenix Mercury of the WNBA. Verizon will equip the facility with “performance analytics and biometric innovations,” per Rankin, which will help the team assess its players during practices.“Verizon’s powerful 5G technology is seamlessly incorporated throughout our facility in a way that is unprecedented in the NBA and American professional sports today,” general manager James Jones commented in a statement.

“That cohesion provides our staff with unparalleled opportunities to efficiently unlock each athlete’s fullest potential,” Jones continued. The Suns, hot off an 8-0 run during the NBA’s Orlando-based seeding games, look to finally make a playoff return thanks to the expected improvement of young stars Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton, plus the addition of Paul.

There’s more out of the Pacific Division:

  • There has been developing buzz that point guard Killian Hayes might fall to the Kings with the No. 12 pick, according to Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee. The 6’5″ guard has been projected as falling to Sacramento in mock drafts today from Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer, Jonathan Givony of ESPN, and Sam Vecenie of The Athletic and Tankathon.
  • Were the Suns to retain their No. 10 lottery pick tonight, they could benefit from an addition across several positions, per Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic. Point guards Kira Lewis Jr., Killian Hayes and Tyrell Terry could serve as solid understudies for the 35-year-old Chris Paul, while forward Aaron Nesmith might also be an intriguing fit.
  • New Thunder point guard Ricky Rubio, a key part of the Sunstrade to acquire Paul, was not expecting to be traded this offseason, according to a recent interview with Spanish outlet recapped by Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic“It was a surprise, especially because of the communication that there has been,” Rubio said. “When [I heard] the rumors about my transfer, I called my people and they told me that my name was not on the table.” Rubio inked a three-year, $51MM contract with Phoenix last summer.
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