NBA Rumors: Ray Allen Would Provide Much-Needed Offense for Phoenix Suns
The Phoenix Suns have surprisingly emerged as a contender for the services of free-agent shooting guard Ray Allen, and a Suns team desperately in need of some offensive firepower needs to do everything in its power to bring the 16-year veteran and all-time NBA three-point king to the Valley of the Sun.
The Phoenix Suns averaged 98.6 points per game last season, 10th in the NBA.
At first glance that may not seem so bad, but for a team whose identity for the past two decades has been to push the ball offensively and run teams off the court, scoring fewer than 100 points a game is enough to make longtime fans of the Suns even queasier than team owner Robert Sarver already does.
It's apt to get worse, too.
Two of the Suns' top six scorers from last season, forward Grant Hill and point guard Steve Nash, are free agents. The chances of those players returning to Phoenix next year are somewhere between slim and you have to be kidding me.
The team added North Carolina point guard Kendall Marshall in this week's NBA draft, but while Marshall is a solid floor general and excellent passer, his offensive game is lacking.
Quite simply, this means that the Suns need some players who can put the biscuit in the basket.
Enter Allen, who was linked to the Suns in a recent report by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
Granted, Allen, at 36 years old, isn't the same player who has been named to 10 NBA All-Star teams. However, he still managed to average 14.2 points per game a year ago and shoot better that 45 percent from three-point land, numbers that would have made him the Suns' second-leading scorer.
The Suns are likely fighting an uphill battle to secure Allen's services, as the Celtics would like to bring him back and Brian Windhorst of ESPN reports that the NBA champion Miami Heat are expected to make a serious push, too.
With that said, according to Wojnarowski, the Suns may have a couple of aces up their sleeves, and one of them is the same color as Allen's jersey:
The Suns have significant salary-cap space, and could pay Allen more than the Miami Heat or New York Knicks. Suns president Lon Babby had been Allen’s agent for a significant part of his career until Babby started running Phoenix’s basketball operations two years ago.
Signing Ray Allen isn't going to make the Phoenix Suns a contender in the Western Conference, it may not be enough to keep Steve Nash in town and it's not going to help accelerate the rebuilding process in Phoenix.
It will, however, give the Suns a shot in the arm on the offense, and, frankly, as long as Robert Sarver owns the team, the rebuilding process is never going to end, anyway.
Just don't tell Ray Allen that, at least until he cashes the check.
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