The Suns are in the market for some players to step for us next year, and big. First off we need to see an improved Jared Dudley, and with his work ethic I think that is a guarantee. Second we need our two pillars of stability Nash and Hill, to be back and be as good as ever, maybe even better. And third we need a reliable backup option to our aging superstar, Steve Nash.
I know what a lot of you are thinking, we just acquired a very talented pg in Aaron Brooks and that his scoring ability will really jump start this club. Well that's where it gets hairy, the problem with brooks is that his defense is atrocious, and not just a little bad, but way worse then Nash even. And we all know that Nash could use some defensive pointers. So then what do we do if we just picked up a defensive dud who has moments of offensive brilliance. We go with our third option.
Now don't freak out when I suggest the scrappy Zabian Dowdell as a solid backup to Steve Nash. First lets sit back and think about the reasons that he could be a better option for a team that is diligently trying to change it's "soft defense" image. First of all, and a major plus, is that Zabian Dowdell has much better length then Aaron Brooks, and as they say you can't teach length or height. This length allows him to get in the passing lanes, and keep up laterally with even the best defenders. If you watch Aaron Brooks defend he is constantly letting the offensive player past him and trying to make defensive plays from behind. This is NOT good defense. Second major skill that he has that Brooks lacks, is the ability to control the offense. I am not trying to say that Aaron cannot do this at all, but rather that he seems to rush things and ends up breaking plays that worked with Nash. Zabian, however, has a natural rhythm to his game that is much better suited to the sorts of plays that we run. In fact he thrives in the pick and roll and seems to make good choices when he gets into the lane.
Now this is not to say he is a bed of roses and has no downsides. As I said before Aaron is a much more gifted one on one offensive player able to create his own shot in a number of ways. This is where Zabian lacks, his ability to create his own shot and score when needed. While he can knock down a 3 or a mid range jump shot from time to time he will really need to get a consistent jumper to free up the rest of the players on the court for open looks. If he can add this to his game in the off season, though, I see little need for Aaron Brooks at all. After all the player we traded for him was a much better all around player. Zabian Dowdell gives me hope for this team because he seems to have a good head on his shoulders and seems eager to put in the time to prove to the world something that he already believes. He deserves to be in the NBA.
Zabian Dowdell Highlights (via DC4judicial)