|Good news, Alvin. You no longer have to watch Suns games. (Getty Images)|
The Phoenix Suns and coach Alvin Gentry will no longer be enjoying each other's company. The two sides have agreed to part ways with the organization looking to get younger and build for the future, while Gentry was hung up on trying to win games. From the Phoenix Suns' press release:
The Phoenix Suns and Alvin Gentry have mutually agreed to part ways after his five-plus seasons as head coach, the club announced today. An interim coach will be named in the next 24-48 hours.
After four-plus years with Gentry coaching the sideline for the Suns and compiling a record of 158-144 with a trip to the Western Conference finals in 2010, the team wants someone who is willing to play and develop the young talent on the team right now. However, here is my question for you:
Where is the young talent?
Markieff Morris is the Suns' best young player on the roster right now, and he's playing 20.2 minutes per game. He's behind Luis Scola at the power forward position but only playing 7.4 fewer minutes per game than Scola. Scola was brought in last summer after he was amnestied from the Houston Rockets. Why bring in a veteran who is better than your young player if you want to develop the young guys?
Perhaps they mean Wes Johnson, who has only played 118 minutes on the season but shot 33.3 percent from the field. He has struggled to find any consistent play in his three seasons in the NBA. Or what about Kendall Marshall, the lottery pick out of North Carolina who has only played in 52 minutes this season? He's currently behind Goran Dragic, who was signed to a four-year, $30 million contract during the offseason, and Sebastian Telfair at the point-guard position.
Or maybe they mean Michael Beasley, who has struggled in his 21.5 minutes per game and seemingly been supplanted by P.J. Tucker in the rotation during most games. Beasley has more shot attempts (367) than points scored (348) and has regressed in every season of his career.
The front office certainly didn't give Gentry much consistency in the roster this season and really not in any season in which he coached the team. The Suns have the worst record in the Western Conference at 13-28, one game behind the 13-26 New Orleans Hornets.
An interim coach will be named and is expected to come from the current coaching staff. Assistant coach Elston Turner has been interviewed for various head coaching positons around the league over the past few years and could be a likely replacement for the time being.