The NBA All-Star ballots have been released and there are thee Phoenix Suns on it.
Before the season, many would expect to see Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe present. But many might have been shocked to know that the Suns lottery pick from three years ago, Markieff Morris would be the third.
But now over a month into the season, Morris has been as much of a surprise as this Suns team has been overall with the evolution of his game.
In the first two seasons in a Suns uniform, there was a lot of Markieff Morris settling for three’s, inconsistent rebounding and inconsistent play overall. But it seem’s like his game has evolved into more of what you should see from a power forward in this league and more what we should see from Markieff in order to be successful.
After Morris’ 25 point, 11 rebound performance off the bench in Friday night’s win over the Raptors, Suns head coach Jeff Hornacek explained exactly why Morris’ game looks to have turned a corner this season.
“He’s able to take a big guy and if a guy steps up on him, he able to drive right by him,” Hornacek said. “If he steps off of him, he’s a good shooter from that 15 to 18 foot range. He’s been smart about when to drive it, when to shoot it and today he was rolling to the basket.”
That’s what you want to see from your power forward. In night’s like Friday night, when Channing Frye and Miles Plumlee found themselves on the bench longer than normal because of foul trouble and matchup problems, you don’t want to see the next biggest guy on the floor (Markieff Morris) hanging out around the three-point line. You want to see him making plays around the basket and active on the boards.
Is Markieff and his 12.2 points and 5.8 boards per game going to be on the All-Star team this year? Most likely not. But the fact that he has elevated his game enough to the point where he is starting to get noticed, directly reflects how his game has evolved.
That is one of the many promising signs of this new look Suns team.