This year the Suns may have drafted No. 13 overall to add depth to the point guard position, but they also added a No. 1 overall pick to the Player Development Staff. The team added the Class of 2011 Hall of Famer and former No. 1 overall pick Ralph Sampson to the Player Development Team.
Sampson comes in with former University of Arizona big man Sean Rooks to the staff that is already headed up by Lindsey Hunter, a former two-time NBA Champion.
Adding to player development has been a major focus of owner Robert Sarver to create stars within the team.
"We are excited to have a Hall of Famer and a person of Ralph's character and integrity around our players every day," said general manager Lance Blanks at Training Camp. "Robert Sarver's commitment of resources will allow us to return this organization to elite status."
That commitment to development began with Mark West as the VP of Player Programs and Corey Gaines who is the head coach and general manager of the Phoenix Mercury. This year the addition of Hunter to head up the Player Development team was a step in the right direction, shortly followed-up with the additions of Sampson and Rooks.
All of these additions should pay dividends to the ongoing development of current and future Suns.
Can Hunter bring the inner scrappy defender out of the perimeter players including Kendall Marshall? Will Sampson, West, and Rooks collective experiences be the missing link for Markieff Morris to let loose that potential he flashes from time-to-time? How about Sampson getting his hands on Marcin Gortat to make him a more polished offensive player sans Nash?
Time is the answer to all of those questions and it is refreshing to see the Suns commit to the development of their future for the first time in nearly 10 years.