The decline in performance of the Phoenix Suns has resulted in Steve Kerr, the General Manager, becoming the scapegoat. Although, one has to accept that Kerr must be held responsible for his decisions, the genuine problem in this team is that it is difficult to determine the master plan of the owner Robert Sarver. To cut down the costs, Sarver removed first round picks like Nate Robinson, Rajon Rondo and Luol Deng as well as the seasoned huge man Kurt Thomas, who was the team’s best post defender. Then, he chose the high priced Shaquille O’Neal.
The Suns did not accede to the “seven seconds or less” theory by Mike D’Antoni and favored the defensive outlook of Terry Porter. Further, halfway through the season, they sacked Porter and made Alvin Gentry the interim coach. He modified Mike’s theory and used the “seven seconds or Shaq” game plan. Under Gentry, the Suns scored minimum 140 points in the first 3 games but since then have dropped to a 4-8 record.
Alterations in the team
In the past 1 year, the Suns have made many alterations and due to this it is tough to find out the impact of any one change. For example, in the previous year, the Suns removed Marcus Banks and Shawn Marion and included Shaquille O’Neal. In the current season, they discarded Sean Singletary, Boris Diaw and Raja Bell and accepted Jared Dudley and Jason Richardson.
Whatever may be the various ups and down in the Suns, the team has been consistent about 3 things. These are – the team has plenty of individual talent, the team has not exhibited mental toughness as a team, the team has never displayed good defense consistently.