The Phoenix Suns’ season is set to get underway Wednesday night and one thing fans are excited for is the backcourt pairing of Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe.
The two young players have primarily been point guards throughout their careers, but will be starting side-by-side, changing the styles or roles they might be used to. While it may take some time to adjust, Suns’ general manager Ryan McDonough believes pairing them will create matchup issues for opposing defenses.
“I’m curious to watch how teams defend Bledsoe and Dragic,” McDonough told Arizona Sports 620’s Burns and Gambo Wednesday. “I think we’re a little bit unique in that we have two guys who can really push the ball up the floor and run pick-and-rolls.”
Having two point guards playing at the same time may seem unconventional, McDonough said the league is changing and there have been examples of it working before.
“I’d say generally that the NBA is becoming more position-less,” McDonough said. “You see a lot of teams, the Knicks are a good example, who play multiple ball-handlers, they run pick-and-rolls from both sides of the floor.”
One historical example McDonough brought up was when Phoenix paired Kevin Johnson and current head coach Jeff Hornacek, two guards who played well with the ball in their hands. The Suns went to two Western Conference Finals with Johnson and Hornacek, proving a team built like that can succeed.
As for how much Bledsoe and Dragic will play together during games, McDonough said he has an idea, but ultimately it is Hornacek’s call.
“My guess is they’ll be together at the beginning and the end of the game,” McDonough said. “It’s up to Coach Hornacek, obviously, with the substitution patterns, but I think one will come out, the other guy will stay in and be the point guard.”
Acquiring the 23-year-old Bledsoe in a three-team trade was one of the first moves McDonough made as GM, while Dragic signed a four-year, $34 million deal with the Suns before the 2012 season as a free agent.