What they're saying about the Suns' draft
But unlike last season when they chose forward Markieff Morris out of Kansas, the Suns picked a guard -- specifically point guard Kendall Marshall from the University of North Carolina.
Regardless of what happens with Steve Nash in free agency, Marshall is viewed as the heir apparent to the two-time MVP at the point guard position.
So, was it a good pick? Only time will tell. But of course, that doesn't stop the national pundits from sharing their opinion of the selection.
Here's what the experts said about the Suns' pick of Kendall Marshall:
Mike Huguenin - Yahoo! Sports
The Suns could lose PG Steve Nash, and Marshall is the best point man in this draft. He is an incredibly gifted passer and ran an up-tempo offense at UNC. He began looking for his shot more late in the season, but he will never be a big scorer. He should annually be among the NBA leaders in assists.
Chad Ford - ESPN (Insider content)
Grade: C I think Marshall will be a solid NBA player. He might be the best passer in the draft, but his lack of lateral quickness may limit him to role player duty in the pros. If Steve Nash stays, he'll be a nice backup. If he leaves, the Suns will still need to find a starting point guard on the free agent market.
Sam Amick - Sports Illustrated
Free-agent point guard Steve Nash made it clear recently that he's not coming back to Phoenix unless significant improvements are made. Regardless of Nash's status, Marshall could be groomed as the point guard of the future, a terrific passer who will spoon-feed the likes of Jared Dudley and Channing Frye on the wings. Marshall didn't score much at North Carolina, but here's how he explained it at the draft combine: "[T]here's a reason I didn't shoot the ball a lot. There are other guys in my team that specialize in that area. But I feel like when my number was called, and when I needed to score, I did so."
Grade: B+ Marshall was able to operate the point guard spot at North Carolina in beautiful fashion. He understands how to play the position at such an advanced level, but Phoenix does not have the talent relative to the NBA that North Carolina has compared to the rest of college basketball. If Steve Nash stays, then Marshall will be able to ease into the position. Such a scenario would certainly help Marshall's transition to the NBA. If Nash leaves and Phoenix goes into full rebuilding mode, it will be a much more burdensome task.
Mike DeCourcy - Sporting News
Marshall has excellent size for a point guard and is a very good passer, but he's not a Bird-Penny-Magic sort of inventor. His greatest gift in the passing department is the ability to see ahead in transition and complete long passes on the break. It's nice to watch, but its practical applications are limited.
Much more important is Marshall's absence of footspeed, his inability to develop a means to overcome this as a defender, his lack of pace to blow past opposing defenders with the ball. Oh, and he's not a great shooter, either. No matter how desperate the Suns may be for a starting point guard, it's hard to see Marshall as the answer.
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- Brian Windhorst, NBA ESPN.com Writer - Friday June 7Brian Windhorst talks about Game 1 of the NBA Finals and what to expect from the rest of the series.
- Suns GM Ryan McDonough - Friday June 7The Suns GM talks about prospects Ben McLemore of Kansas and Victor Oladipo of Indiana.