Although the Phoenix Suns haven’t made any formal announcements, it has been reported that three additions to coach Jeff Hornacek’s staff have been made.
The most familiar name is former Suns center and Hornacek teammate Mark West, who moves to coaching assistant from the role of vice president of player programs.
Another familiar name — for other reasons — is Roy Rogers. Rogers, a power forward who was a first-round pick (22nd overall) by the Vancouver Grizzlies in 1996, played for four NBA teams before finishing his career in Europe. He coached in the D-League, worked as an assistant to Lawrence Frank with the New Jersey Nets, scouted for the Nets, was on the staff of Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers and, most recently, assisted Frank in Detroit.
The third reported addition is former Boston Celtics guard Jerry Sichting. Sichting, who starred at Purdue before his NBA career, worked as a scout, development coach and bench coach with the Minnesota Timberwolves under former Celtics teammate Kevin McHale. He also was an assistant to Keith Smart with the Golden State Warriors, spent one season as interim boys varsity coach at Martinsville (Ind.) High School — his alma mater — and worked this past season as an assistant coach for the Washington Wizards.
According to one league personnel executive, bringing in West and Rogers suggests a commitment to developmental work with young post players.
But unless you put Markieff Morris in that category, the Suns really don’t have any … yet. It has been speculated — based on comments from general manager Ryan McDonough regarding rookie position duplication — that the Suns will avoid using the fifth and 30th picks in the NBA draft’s opening round on players who occupy similar areas of the floor.
But the Suns could use one of those selections on a post player and simply have two experienced coaches to work with him. Or, as more speculation erupts, the Suns might be attempting to add another first-round pick by using veteran center Marcin Gortat (and his expiring contract) as a trade asset. Or they could be attempting to use Gortat to move up from No. 30.
“Having two bigs coaches is kind of interesting in terms of where they might be going in the draft,” the personnel guy said.
Right, or the Suns might be targeting a relatively young post player in free agency.
And if the team keeps development coach Ralph Sampson on the payroll, NBA observers may predict the Suns are planning to kidnap every post player in the draft.
At this time of year, everything seems like a clue.