Markieff Morris managed 23 points (7-14 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 9-13 FT), seven rebounds, three assists, two steals, and one block in 32 minutes during the Phoenix Suns ' 122-106 loss to the Thunder on Monday.
Morris has averaged 21 points, 7.5 rebounds, 4.8 assists, 1.5 blocks, and one steal in 35 minutes per appearance over the last four games since Earl Watson took over as coach for the recently fired Jeff Hornacek. Those who stashed Morris in fantasy leagues are now reaping the benefits, and likely went from wanting him to be traded to hoping he stays put.
The 26-year-old held his own in a tough battle with the Jazz's stalwart frontcourt, posting double-digit points for the fourth consecutive game while coming just a couple of rebounds short of a double-double. Morris did struggle for the field for the second straight game, and has now shot under 40 percent in four of the last five contests. He did drain multiple threes for the first time since Dec. 23 versus the Nuggets, and the big man's long-range shooting touch does help add a valuable dimension to his game and fantasy production. Unlike his tumultous relationship with former coach Jeff Hornacek, Morris appears to mesh well with interim man Earl Watson, and seems to have a secure spot in the starting five for the time being.
Markieff Morris recorded 30 points (13-20 FG, 1-3 3Pt, 3-5 FT), 11 rebounds, six assists, two blocks, and one steal in 41 minutes during the Phoenix Suns ' 104-97 loss to the Raptors on Tuesday.
With the Suns moving on from coach Jeff Hornacek and promoting Earl Watson as the interim coach, Morris may very well continue to start going forward. Watson said Morris will be the main focus of the offense, and the Suns could certainly use his scoring punch if they hope to be competitive on a nightly basis. Morris posted season-highs in scoring, rebounding, and assists on Tuesday, and matched his season-high in blocks. If he is out there on any waiver wires, it'd be wise to scoop him up fast.
Markieff Morris will get the start in Tuesday's game against Toronto, Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic reports.
Morris has seen the starting lineup now and then this season. Tuesday will be his first time starting since January 19th. Look for him to see a minutes increase by virtue of injuries to teammates and being in the starting lineup. It's unclear if he'll remain in the starting lineup for any games going forward.
Newly instated interim head coach Earl Watson implied Tuesday that
The relationship between former head coach Jeff Hornacek and Morris clearly soured during the first half of the season as the forward was moved to the bench and registered numerous DNP-CD. The coaching switch could certainly enhance Morris' lackluster value, but there are still question marks surrounding his future in Phoenix after averaging just 23 minutes on 32 outings. Nevertheless, Morris is still an enticing buy-low option who could start to see his 2015-16 campaign take a turn for the better.
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