10:09 AM EDT, Mon September 16, 2019
1 hour ago
Center of the Sun: Ricky Rubio’s FIBA World Cup performance leaves the Suns looking smart to sign him

Center of the Sun: Ricky Rubio’s FIBA World Cup performance leaves the Suns looking smart to sign him

Photo by Fred Lee/ So much for the ESPN poll calling it one of the worst moves of the summer. Welcome to the weekly news roundup of your Phoenix Suns. The FIBA World Cup games are over. One of the newest Suns, Ricky Rubio, will soon be joining the team in the Valley with a Gold Medal, a member of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 All-Star 5 and tournament MVP honors. He’s also now the all-time leader in assists in the history of the FIBA Basketball World Cup. He averaged 16.4 points, 6 assists, 4.6 rebounds and 1.5 steals and shot 38.7% from three (1.5/3.9) in 26.3 minutes per...
23 hours ago
Rubio wins gold, MVP; Baynes hurt in FIBA World Cup

Rubio wins gold, MVP; Baynes hurt in FIBA World Cup

Photo by Lintao Zhang/ New Suns players competed for medals in the FIBA World Championship Phoenix Suns new starting point guard Ricky Rubio led his country to the Gold Medal in the FIBA World Cup, as Spain soundly defeated an Argentina squad that finally turned back into a pumpkin at the hands of Spain’s stifling defense. The final score was 95-75 after Argentina had briefly cut the Spanish lead to 11 in the middle of the fourth quarter. Rubio was named the FIBA World Cup tournament MVP. In the bronze medal game, Australia lost to France to kill their medal hopes and ruin their memory...
Sep 14, 2019
Should we expect the Suns’ rookies to earn consistent playing time this season?

Should we expect the Suns’ rookies to earn consistent playing time this season?

Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Cam Johnson is a likely candidate to join the rotation as a rookie, but Ty Jerome and Jalen Lecque may be brought along more slowly. It’s nice, for once, for the Suns to not have the development of their first-round draft picks be based on a quick prayer answered by Lady Luck. By selecting players more NBA-ready and who fit more neatly into a box that they wanted filled, the Suns emerged from draft night with players more likely to succeed, if not the vaulted ceilings of the rawer players preferred by the last front office. The team also protected...
Sep 13, 2019
Locked On Suns Friday: The Suns’ big rotation is set up to maximize Deandre Ayton

Locked On Suns Friday: The Suns’ big rotation is set up to maximize Deandre Ayton

Between a steadfast veteran backup and floor-spacers around him, Ayton has the help to improve in Year 2. Saving the best for last (or maybe we just went from smallest to biggest), we break down the Suns’ big man rotation as we continue previewing the 2019-20 season. Everything that went into reconstructing this group was centered around building around the lone holdover, 2018 No. 1 overall pick Deandre Ayton. His backup is better, there is more shooting around him, and the end of the rotation is filled with young developmental depth pieces. This is where James Jones shined this...
Sep 13, 2019
The Madhouse - Week of 9/13

The Madhouse - Week of 9/13

Photo by Alex Goodlett/ Rubio, Saric, Oubre, Marbury, Booker, unions, the return of video stores, and Danny Ainge sucks. Happy Friday. Cheat on your diet this weekend. Suns Stuff In this week’s Center of the Sun Rod touched on the performances of Ricky Rubio and Aron Baynes at the FIBA World Cup. What we are seeing is very promising. I don’t blame Devin Booker one bit for not playing with the Americans at the tournament, but at the same time I’m going to heap a ton of praise on Rubio and Baynes for doing just that. I mean playing doesn’t hurt, unless it hurts, and these guys...
Sep 12, 2019
FIBA World Cup Buyer’s Market, Phoenix Suns edition

FIBA World Cup Buyer’s Market, Phoenix Suns edition

Photo by Yifan Ding/ Whose stock is up and whose stock is down heading into the final days of the FIBA World Cup in China? The FIBA World Cup is down to the Final Four. As a whole, the tournament has been a spectacle, showcasing basketball talents across the globe. Yes, there can only be one gold medal winner, but that doesn’t mean other players won’t be leaving the tournament as winners as well. With that, let’s take a look at whose stock we are buying after the most recent set of FIBA Games. Buy: Aron Baynes Aron Baynes has been nothing short of dominant in the FIBA World Cup....
Sep 12, 2019
Examining the Suns’ potential to improve their three-point shooting this season

Examining the Suns’ potential to improve their three-point shooting this season

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports Can last season’s weakness be turned into this season’s strength? When I first decided to take on this article, I thought it would be a fairly straightforward endeavor. It was not. In it’s most simplistic form you can just look at the three-point percentages of the players on the roster this season and compare them to the players on the roster last season. That’s part of it but certainly not all. Hitting a high percentage of threes doesn’t have as a great an impact if the attempts per game are low. Pace figures in as a slower pace leads to fewer...
Sep 11, 2019
Locked On Suns Wednesday: Wing rotation comes down to more than Mikal Bridges vs. Kelly Oubre Jr. starting

Locked On Suns Wednesday: Wing rotation comes down to more than Mikal Bridges vs. Kelly Oubre Jr. starting

We continue to go position-by-position on the Suns’ roster as we discuss the wing rotation. We continue our positional breakdowns with a preview of the Suns’ wing rotation, where the question of who starts between Mikal Bridges and Kelly Oubre Jr. looms large. However, both are expected to get significant minutes regardless, which begs the question of how they fit together and improve individually. With rookie Cam Johnson rounding out the group, the depth chart is heavy on shooting and weak defensively. But before all of that, we react to the Sports Illustrated Top 100 and where a trio...
Sep 11, 2019
Deandre Ayton doing his part in Hurricane Dorian relief — Here’s how you can help!

Deandre Ayton doing his part in Hurricane Dorian relief — Here’s how you can help!

Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Ayton grew up in the Bahamas, a chain of islands which were decimated by Hurricane Dorian last week. Few of us have ever had to see our home devastated by a natural disaster. If you grew up in Arizona, rarely would you ever have crossed paths with a deadly storm. And even if you have had the misfortune to come in contact with something like a hurricane, few in the recent past have been as deadly as Hurricane Dorian. So as Deandre Ayton gets ready for the season, he is seeing unfathomable devastation in the islands where he grew up. As of now, the death toll...
Sep 11, 2019
Solar Panel, ep. 151: Debating the SI Top 100, which includes Booker, Rubio but ignores Ayton, Saric

Solar Panel, ep. 151: Debating the SI Top 100, which includes Booker, Rubio but ignores Ayton, Saric

Dave, Greg and Tim discuss the merits of the SI Top 100 Tim, Dave and Greg bring you the mid-week episode of the Solar Panel! This time we discuss the merits of the SI Top 100, with great insights from all three that show just how tough it is to rank these players in the first place. We discuss Deandre Ayton, Dario Saric, Devin Booker and Ricky Rubio and all the players around them on the list. Watch/Listen right here! Help us pay the bills! Support the show for $1-$10 per month here: support Follow the Suns Solar Panel crew on Twitter @SunsSolarPanel, @Espo, @DaveKingNBA and...
Sep 11, 2019
FIBA Update: Team USA out while Rubio’s Spain and Baynes Australia still alive

FIBA Update: Team USA out while Rubio’s Spain and Baynes Australia still alive

Photo by Yifan Ding/ Team USA lost to France in the quarterfinals of the FIBA World Championships Wow, remember when Team USA was devastated when they only won bronze at the Olympics in 2004 after finishing sixth, out of the medals, in FIBA World Championships in 2002? Well, now they’ve done it again. Nearly a dozen of the best American players took the summer off for various reasons, including the Suns Devin Booker, and now the depleted Team USA came up short in the quarterfinals of the 2019 FIBA’s today. Team USA lost to France in the quarterfinals today, 89-79, as guards Kemba...
Sep 10, 2019
Locked On Suns Tuesday: Devin Booker-Ricky Rubio partnership takes center stage in the Suns’ guard rotation

Locked On Suns Tuesday: Devin Booker-Ricky Rubio partnership takes center stage in the Suns’ guard rotation

We continue previewing the 2019-20 season by starting our positional breakdowns with the Suns’ playmakers. We start our positional breakdowns off with a preview of the Suns’ guard rotation, with Ricky Rubio and Devin Booker front and center. Can they take a leap forward with a real point guard next to Booker, or does the partnership take time to gel? Who amongst the young players is most likely to make an impact? We close the show with our superlatives for the guard position. Find us on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Spotify! Follow on Twitter: @LockedOnPHXSuns, @esidery,...
Sep 10, 2019
Deandre Ayton, Dario Saric outside SI Top 100, which includes Wiggins, Ross, Kuzma and more

Deandre Ayton, Dario Saric outside SI Top 100, which includes Wiggins, Ross, Kuzma and more

Photo by Michael Reaves/ Ayton and a new addition are getting no love from national media. As we continue the bad off season talk about the Phoenix Suns, this week we turn to SI.com and their annual “NBA Top 100” for 2020 in which they inexcusably snubbed Suns center Deandre Ayton but otherwise gave acceptable rankings to Devin Booker, Ricky Rubio and the rest of the gang. Clearly, this was another attempt by national writers besmirch the good name of the Phoenix Suns franchise with a smear campaign that’s bordering on shameful. We know they lay awake at night, cooking up scheme...
Sep 9, 2019
Who will Start between Mikal Bridges and Kelly Oubre?

Who will Start between Mikal Bridges and Kelly Oubre?

Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports Which Phoenix Suns small forward will start the most games? We’re more than a month away from the start of the 2019-20 NBA season. After what felt like years for the season to start, we’ll finally get to see how the Phoenix Suns look after an offseason of change. One starting position that hasn’t been decided for the Suns is at small forward as it’s between forwards Mikal Bridges and Kelly Oubre Jr. There’s a lot to like with both Oubre and Bridges. Bridges is the prototypical three and D wing who showed glimpses of brilliance on the defensive...
Sep 9, 2019
Suns reportedly sign Haywood Highsmith to training camp deal

Suns reportedly sign Haywood Highsmith to training camp deal

Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Highsmith signed an Exhibit 10 contract with the Suns, meaning it can be converted to a two-way deal. As the Suns look to lock in the last piece of their roster, they have signed former 76ers wing Haywood Highsmith to a training camp deal, according to Gina Mizell of The Athletic. Similar to how the Suns have structured their other training camp deals for Tariq Owens and David Kramer, this contract, according to Mizell, is an Exhibit 10 deal. This clause was added at the same time as two-way contracts, and it allows teams to sign players to regular...