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Phoenix Suns

Updated Apr 3, 2013 - 4:23 pm

Lindsey Hunter sheds light on sitting Goran Dragic

Phoenix Suns guard Goran Dragic, left, of Slovenia, loses the ball after being fouled by Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert, right, during the second half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, March 30, 2013, in Phoenix. The Pacers won 112-104. (AP Photo/Paul Connors)

The Phoenix Suns, both their front office and their coaching staff, have been adamant about the team continuing to play with energy and effort even though they'll finish out of playoff contention for the third consecutive year.

That stance, coupled with the organization's decision not to play leading scorer Goran Dragic in two games last week, raised some eyebrows.

The Suns lost consecutive games against Utah and Sacramento without Dragic in uniform. The 26-year-old Slovenian point guard wasn't happy about the decision, according to his head coach.

"I wouldn't expect anything less from him," Lindsey Hunter told Burns and Gambo on Arizona Sports 620 Wednesday. "And that's what makes him great -- that competitive fire and that competitive fight."

Dragic is leading the Suns in scoring at 14.5 points per game and ranks tenth in the league in assists at 7.2 per contest.

Hunter also explained that the reason for giving Dragic the rest despite him not being injured was a product of the guard's workload this season.

"That's a big factor, and that's the most important thing for us is his health and keeping him healthy throughout this process," Hunter said.

Dragic will also be representing Slovenia in the FIBA EuroBasket Tournament this summer, which has also been considered by Suns' brass.

"We don't want him limping into the summer and going through that process already feeling kind of run-down, I don't think that would be good for him at all, either," Hunter said. "If we were fighting for a playoff position or contending for a championship, totally different.

"But this isn't that, and we have to look at Goran's welfare and his future more so than anything else."

About the Author

School: Arizona State University

When you started with Bonneville Phoenix: October 2011

Favorite sports memory: Watching Cardinals win NFC Championship over Philly in January 2009 with my Dad...ASU wins 1987 Rose Bowl...Suns defeat Lakers in 1990 NBA Playoffs...2001 World Series

Favorite all-time athletes: Don Mattingly, Jeff Hornacek, Walter Davis, Anquan Boldin

Favorite sports movies: Friday Night Lights, The Natural, Hoosiers


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