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Phoenix Suns sign forward Cheick Diallo to 2-year deal

Cheick Diallo #13 of the New Orleans Pelicans grabs a rebound against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on February 22, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

The Phoenix Suns have added some depth to their big man rotation, officially inking power forward Cheick Diallo to a two-year deal on Tuesday.

The addition gives the Suns the NBA maximum of 15 players on their roster

Diallo, 22, averaged 6.0 points and 5.2 rebounds per game for the Pelicans last year.

The 6-foot-9 big was one of the better NBA prospects coming into his freshman year at Kansas in 2015, known for his length, explosiveness and shot-blocking ability. Ineligibility issues, though, and a late entrance into the Jayhawks’ rotation had him play only 7.5 minutes a game.

That significantly hurt his draft stock, but despite that, Diallo declared and fell to the early second round at No. 33 overall to the New Orleans Pelicans.

In three seasons, Diallo was unable to break through and earn the trust of Pelicans coaches, playing 12.6 minutes per game in his career. He has been productive in limited stints, though, averaging 15.6 points, 13.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per 36 minutes.

Diallo fills a glaring need for athleticism on the Suns’ frontcourt rotation outside of Deandre Ayton, where Aron Baynes, Frank Kaminsky and Dario Saric also reside.

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