With Mike D’Antoni no longer part of the picture, the Phoenix Suns will attempt to form a new identity under new coach Terry Porter. This will likely mean far less fast-breaking, and more attention to half-court execution and defense. In other words, it might take Suns fans a little while to recognize the product on the floor.
The Suns won’t necessarily score in 7 seconds or less this season, but they promise not to bore us to death either. From ESPN:
“We’re not looking to all of a sudden slow things down and play 80-point games,” Kerr said. “Our players have to run. We’re still going to be entertaining, but we’re trying to add some balance. I really think that the foundation is being laid right now defensively with the work we’ve done in camp and in practices.
While no one expects this team to reproduce the defensive ugliness of the Heat or Knicks of the mid-to-late ’90s, their transformation from D’Antoni-Ball to whatever it is they’ll become should be interesting to watch nonetheless.
And the time to make this experiment work is quickly (if not totally) running out for Phoenix; with the exception of Amare and Barbosa, most of the key players on the Suns roster are borderline senior citizens by NBA standards.