The level of intensive game preparation that Suns head coach Monty Williams prefers appealed to All-Star point guard Chris Paul even prior to the team trading for him, writes Dana Scott of The Arizona Republic. Williams and Paul led the club to its first NBA Finals appearance in 28 years during the 2020/21 season, Paul’s first with the team.
“When I thought about going to Phoenix, see, people didn’t even know that was in my mind, right, to go to Phoenix,” Paul said of his thinking before being traded to the Suns by the Thunder during the 2020 offseason. “I knew Monty already, and regardless of how our relationship has been in the past, or even that year when I played for him, I know his mindset, so I know he prepares, right? It’s a preparation thing, too. You want to know when you in the last minute, two minutes in the game that coach, that coach can give you X’s and O’s.”
There’s more out of the Pacific Division:
- Veteran point guard Rajon Rondo, expected to return to the Lakers on a veteran’s minimum deal this week, will be an obvious locker room boon, but Bill Oram of The Athletic wonders how Rondo will contribute on the court. Oram notes that Rondo, who won his second NBA title as a key role player for Los Angeles in 2020, was not nearly as valued a rotation player in a 2021 postseason spent with the Lakers’ cross-town rivals, the Clippers.
- The Warriors are not believed to be considering adding veteran guard Avery Bradley, tweets Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area. An 11-year vet, Bradley began the 2020/21 season with the Heat before being traded to the Rockets. He averaged 6.4 PPG on 37.4% field goal shooting, to go along with 2.1 RPG and 1.7 APG, in 27 games. The Rockets declined their $5.9MM team option on Bradley before the start of free agency this summer, making him an unrestricted free agent.
- In case you missed it, 34-year-old former NBA point guard Darren Collison is set to work out for the Warriors this week. Collison last suited up for the Pacers during the 2018/19 season, before surprisingly announcing his retirement during free agency in the summer of 2019.