Brandon Knight Finds a Home in Phoenix
*Photo via AP
Brandon Knight played a season and a half with the Milwaukee Bucks before being moved at the trade deadline last year to the Phoenix Suns. The Suns used their 2015 first round pick (top five protected) via the Los Angeles Lakers to acquire Knight, by trading it to the Philadelphia 76ers.
Suns fans took a deep breath and exhaled when they saw the Lakers retain the pick, knowing that it could have dropped below five to Philadelphia.
Knight thought he'd found a home in Milwaukee, while putting up All-Star type numbers in 2014-2015. Still only 23 years old, he's finally landed on a team that will invest in him long-term. He and the Suns have agreed in principle to a five year, 70 million dollar contract. The same contract that Suns point guard, Eric Bledsoe signed last summer with the team.
Suns fans took yet another deep breath and let it all out, after learning that Knight will embrace his role as a shooting guard.
This news offered great relief, due to Goran Dragic's unwillingness to embrace the role. While the organization lost their face of the franchise in Dragic, they just may have received one back in Knight who is 6 years younger.
With “Backcourt 2015” in place, the Suns know they have a special athlete in Bledsoe. However, Knight injured his ankle last season after the trade and played in only 11 games, leaving questions about his ceiling.
Take in another deep breath Suns fans...now breath out slowly once again.
While Knight struggled to adjust to a new team and a two point guard system, his 11 games in a Suns uniform before the injury are not a true indicator of what he brings to the team. As he waits to officially sign his contract, the Suns have a potential All-Star and leader in Brandon Knight.
In 52 games with the Bucks last season, Knight averaged 17.8 points, 5.4 assists, 4.3 rebounds and a career-high 1.6 steals. His size (six-three) and versatility will allow him to guard other two guards, and his ball handling and court awareness will equate to distributing at point guard.
Knight will score at both positions. He also averaged career-highs 40.9 percent from beyond the arc and 43.5 percent from the field, and is clearly capable of playing at this level next season. General manager, Ryan McDonough was open with the media regarding who came back to them in the trade last February.
"We feel like we got the best player in the trade, coming or going," said McDonough.
Wouldn't it be something if this were true Suns fans? Breathe easy because Brandon Knight is your new face of the franchise, and he just may make that All-Star team in a Suns uniform very soon.