The Phoenix Suns are known as an offensive oriented team. The Phoenix Coyotes are more known for their defense and poor scoring proficiency. Both teams will try to address their weaknesses by making changes to their rosters but both teams also, in the same week, have added an assistant coach to help as well.
The Phoenix Coyotes on Tuesday announced the hiring of John Anderson to serve as the team's assistant coach.
"We are very pleased to have John join our coaching staff," said General Manager Don Maloney. "John has experience as an NHL head coach in addition to having won several championships as a head coach in the American Hockey League. He sees the game from an offensive perspective and he will be counted on to help improve our offensive performance. Both he and Jim Playfair will be great additions to Dave Tippett's staff."
The Phoenix Suns haven't formalized their announcement, but according to a report in the Arizona Republic they've selected Elston Turner to be the team's "defensive coordinator".
Phoenix Suns hire Elston Turner as new defensive assistant coach
Turner will be charged with evaluating game tape and the roster and deciphering what strategies will work best for the Suns defense. He also will be in charge of the Suns' defensive portions of practice. Each one will now have a committed 40-minute defensive session to improve on last season's 26th-ranked defensive field goal percentage. Turner is being hired now, despite the lockout, to begin planning with Gentry on next season.
The impact of ability of an assistant coach on a basketball or hockey team to make a big impact is questionable, but at least the Coyotes and Suns are trying to address their weaknesses.