Phoenix Suns NBA Draft host roundtable: PG targets, favorite at No. 6
It has been a while since the Phoenix Suns were in this position.
Not only is there a great deal of intrigue and mystery behind who the Suns could select with No. 6 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, there’s a question of if they even keep the pick at all.
With Thursday’s draft expected to deliver on the drama, we asked 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s hosts three questions on the big night for the Suns.
1. What do you want the Suns to do with the No. 6 pick? Trade up? Trade down? Trade out?
Dan Bickley, co-host of Bickley & Marotta: There are only two impact players in this draft, maybe three. I want the Suns to package the No. 6 pick in a pre-draft trade.
Dave Burns, co-host of Burns & Gambo: Ideally they trade it for some kind of a veteran player. Either as part of a trade back or a trade out. It’s hard for me to get all that excited about another 19-year-old kid that may or may not be a part of the future. Maybe I’m just jaded by the last several years of high first-round picks that have flamed out.
Jordan Byrd, host of Arizona Sports Saturday: This might be stating the obvious but I would like the Suns to use the #6 pick on the best player available. This draft is not strong enough to trade up and I’m not sure there will be enough interest in the pick for teams to move up to 6. Therefore, the Suns are probably stuck where they are and need to use it for the best remaining talent on the board.
Doug Franz, co-host of Doug & Wolf: Take Zion.
John Gambadoro, co-host of Burns & Gambo: Trade down would be ideal but only a couple of spots if both point guards (Garland and White) are off the board. From there, take the best available among Jarrett Culver, Brandon Clarke, De’Andre Hunter and Jaxson Hayes.
Luke Lapinski, Host of The Rundown: If trading up to No. 2 and getting Ja was somehow an option, that would be my choice. But it isn’t, so I’d trade the pick for an established point guard if I could. If not, I’d stay and use it on Darius Garland or Coby White. Trading down doesn’t really do much for me, because the Suns don’t really need to stockpile more picks at this point.
Vince Marotta, co-host of Bickley & Marotta: It’s not that I don’t like the players in the Suns’ range at No. 6, I just don’t like how their potential to help this team immediately looks. Yes, I’m in the ‘impatient’ category, so I’d like to see Phoenix trade the pick to acquire veteran talent (if possible) or trade down to use the pick on a player who figures to be more of a project.
Ron Wolfley, co-host of Doug & Wolf: I want the Suns to pick the best player available at No. 6 and hope the best player available at No. 6 is magically a PG. I don’t want them to trade up, trade down or do anything that includes trading T.J. Warren.
2. Do the Suns need to come away from this draft with a point guard, whether that’s via a trade or a selection?
Bickley: At some point before next season, the Suns need to acquire a front-line veteran point guard and a beastly power forward who can patrol the lane.
Burns: The only other option is through free agency which could very well be the plan. So do they “need” to? Not necessarily but they better be sure that they’ve got one locked up in free agency. If they don’t draft one and if they don’t trade for one that will be the only chance they have left. Blow it and this whole offseason will have been a waste.
Byrd: Not necessarily. It’s not a long shot to think that both Garland and White are off the board by 6, and in that case there is no other worthy PG to select. In addition, I can’t imagine there is any team that is filling to give up a veteran ball handler for the sixth pick in this draft. The Suns can draft best player available and still address the point guard position in free agency.
Franz: Yes. My four preferred options in order are drafting Coby White, signing Darren Collison, drafting Darius Garland and trading for Mike Conley.
Gambadoro: They need a point guard but it doesn’t have to be in the draft — it could be in free agency. Ideally, they get one in the draft to develop and one in free agency to start.
Lapinski: They need to come away from this summer with a point guard. I don’t care if they draft one, trade for one, sign one in free agency or clone Jrue Holiday somehow. They just need to get one.
Marotta: The Suns absolutely need to come away with a point guard in these proceedings and preferably one with NBA experience.
Wofley: See the previous answer…which, when parsed, is affirmative!
3. If the Suns stay at No. 6, which prospect in that range do you want them to pick?
Bickley: If the Suns use their No. 6 pick, I would select Coby White or DeAndre Hunter, depending on the quality of point guard they import at the starting position.
Burns: If they stay put, I’m inclined for them to take Jarrett Culver. I like his skillset and versatility. His defensive ability and ball-handling are big keys to me.
Byrd: If the Suns stay at 6, I would love for them to select Jarrett Culver. Yes the Suns need a point guard, but do they really need another 19 year old one who isn’t even the top PG in this class? To me, it would be better served to take the most talented player left at 6 and I believe that to be Culver.
Franz: Coby White. I loved Garland in the one game I saw him play, and that’s the point — it was one game. White is safe. Garland is a health risk. Garland might end up as the better player but with Booker and Ayton already here, I’d rather take the safe pick.
Gambadoro: I really like De’Andre Hunter, a power forward who can defend and knock down three-pointers. He would be a good fit. But I also like Garland and White, two point guards who are very different. White is more of a combo guard who is a good shooter while Garland is more of an explosive scorer who can also shoot. Culver is enticing as well since he can play the 1, 2 or 3 and can really defend. I think no matter what they get a good player at No. 6.
Lapinski: Garland or White. The underlying theme here is I want a point guard.
Marotta: If there’s no way out of picking a player at No. 6, I like Vanderbilt point guard Darius Garland a little bit better than North Carolina’s Coby White or Texas Tech’s Jarrett Culver. I’m really intrigued by Valley prep product and former Gonzaga standout Brandon Clarke, but I think No. 6 would be too high to select him.
Wofley: Darius Garland. Speed kills. And so does penetration.