Alex Len spent time learning from Tim Duncan this summer

When the Suns selected Alex Len with the fifth overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, it was known within the franchise that he would need time to develop.

Len showed signs of that last year, averaging 6.3 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.5 blocked shots in 22 minutes per contest, while starting in 44 of his 69 appearances.

In an effort to more quickly move the process along, Len spent time in San Antonio over the summer working with Tim Duncan, who is unquestionably one of the game's all-time greats.

“He was super-cool about it,” Len said. “He was one of the nice players I’ve ever met in my life. He is one of the most humble superstars you’ll ever meet. He’s like Tyson (Chandler). He’s always happy to answer any question. He genuinely wants to help you.”

The chance to work on nuances with “The Big Fundamental” was set up by Suns senior adviser Lon Babby, who served as Duncan’s agent before becoming a Suns president in 2010. Len met Duncan, a 16-time All-Star, each day to work out and then join Spurs pickup games — an option for any NBA player when visiting an opponent town in the offseason.

“He helped me a lot too with my patience, catching the ball, where you look, what action, what guys you’re looking for in cuts, reading defense,” Len said.

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