It appears Phoenix Suns center Marcin Gortat is not exactly happy with his role.
The 28-year-old is coming off a year in which he averaged personal bests in points, rebounds and blocked shots per game, and many thought it may have been the tip of the iceberg with regards to how well he could play.
But Gortat has seen his numbers decrease this season, and the “Polish Machine” is not happy about it.
According to an interview with http://nba.przegladsportowy.pl, one that has been loosely-translated via Google Translate, the third-year Sun has had enough.
When asked about how much things have changed for the Suns this season, Gortat said:
“I am able to help the team and regularly earn more than 10 points and have more than 10 rebounds, but the ball still sticks in the attack to one person, it’s hard to find a good rhythm on the offensive.”
Gortat talked about how things are different without Steve Nash around, saying there are fewer pick and rolls that result in the center scoring points.
“Unfortunately, two of my strongest variants, the pick-and-roll and stock one-on-one with his back to the basket, has been taken from me. It is not easy. We now have lots of new licks that do not always come true, and at the same time I do not even take into account. In addition, on the dance floor do not understand so well with playmaker Goran Dragic as Steve. These are the things we need to work on.”
Like we said, “loosely-translated”, as nobody thinks Gortat’s issues with the Dragic-led offense have anything to do with how the Slovenian point guard dances.
However, it seems as though Gortat, who is averaging 11 points, 9.8 rebounds and 3.0 blocks per game, believes he can do more. The center is taking two fewer shots per contest than he did last season, though to be fair he’s also shooting a lower percentage.
That hasn’t stopped him from believing he not only can do more, but should. And that he isn’t a greater part of the offense is a sign that Suns coach Alvin Gentry may not be adapting his offense to suit the personnel.
“All my life I dealt with the hard work and now I have to go back. I will fight for her. I will try to prove to the coach that I can also play an important role in the attack. In coach Gentry’s probably not an option I’m not offensive. It does not take me into consideration at all. The situation is critical. We play the same as a year ago, and the truth is that we are completely different players. Not quite what I think works.”
Then again, Gentry was not the only one Gortat called out. No, Gortat talked about the Suns’ offense and how there is not as much passing as in the past.
“We do not share the ball like we did in previous seasons. The ball does not circulate around the perimeter – usually ends in the administration of one or two people. In this way, you can not play and win. Basketball is a team game.”
Despite all that, Gortat said he believes the Suns can still be a playoff team. He admitted to being less optimistic than he was one the season began, but said it would be wrong to give up on them just yet.
The site also reports that Gortat rejected a contract extension with the Suns, and that a handful of teams — including the Dallas Mavericks, Chicago Bulls, Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic are interested in trading for him.