PHOENIX SUNS

Saben Lee earns another 10-day contract with Suns

Jan 21, 2023, 11:06 AM | Updated: 11:07 am
Phoenix Suns guard Saben Lee, left, drives ahead of Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant, right, in th...

Phoenix Suns guard Saben Lee, left, drives ahead of Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant, right, in the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Jan. 16, 2023, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Brandon Dill)

(AP Photo/Brandon Dill)

The Phoenix Suns on Saturday signed point guard Saben Lee to a second 10-day contract.

Lee filled in with a strong four-game stretch in his first short-term deal, averaging 11.3 points, 3.8 assists and 2.5 rebounds per game.

He joined a team that was missing starting guards Chris Paul and Devin Booker, as well as backups Cam Payne and, for part of the recent stretch, Landry Shamet.

Lee’s best game came Thursday in a 117-112 win against the Brooklyn Nets, when he recorded 15 points and six assists in 29 minutes.

“He can defend, picks up 94 feet and he can push the pace,” Suns president of basketball operations and GM James Jones said on Jan. 12. “He’s a guy that gets paint touches and puts pressure on the defense, and can get us into some early offense.

“As we look at … the future without Chris and Cam Payne and with Duane (Washington) taking on a bigger load, we just felt like we needed someone that could get us out in transition and get us easy baskets — someone that could put pressure on opposing teams and help us manufacture some steals and turnovers.”

Lee had been playing for the Raptors 905 of the G League before joining the Suns, who he’d played for in the preseason.

Lee played in 87 games over his three seasons in the NBA, averaging 5.5 points per game on 43.7% shooting, 3.3 assists and 2.1 rebounds. Eighty-five of these games came over his first two seasons with the Detroit Pistons.

Detroit traded Lee with Kelly Olynyk to the Utah Jazz in exchange for Bojan Bogdanovic in September and Lee was waived by the Jazz in training camp before the year.

This year, Lee has bounced around the G League with the Raptors 905, Delaware Blue Coats and then back to the 905. He also played in two games in the NBA in 2022 with the Philadelphia 76ers.

Lee was signed to the Suns in October and played one preseason game.

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