Since joining the Phoenix Suns in a last-minute deal with the Houston Rockets to beat the NBA's trade deadline last season, Aaron Brooks has been an enigma of sorts. At times he has shown flashes of still being the same lightning-quick slasher and deadly three-point shooter that earned him a reputation of being one of the young, up-and coming point guards in the 2009/10 season.
However, at times he has also been the inefficient and hotheaded player that quickly fell out of favor with the Rockets less than a year later. Brooks is now a restricted free-agent this summer after Phoenix extended him a qualifying offer of three-million dollars shortly before the lockout began. This ensures Phoenix will have the option to either match any offers Brooks receives from other teams when free-agency resumes, or allow him to leave if they choose.
Paola Boivin of the Arizona Republic recently wrote an article about Brooks after catching up with him at Seattle's H206 Charity Basketball Classic. When asked about the possibility of a future with the Phoenix Suns, Brooks answered, " I love Phoenix. I think they like me, too. They picked up my qualifying offer, didn't they?". He also went on to say that, "Despite how things went, I think Phoenix is a good place for me...The players, management, fans; everything about the team I liked. That's not something you always find".
Brooks believes that many of his struggles last season in Phoenix were due to changing teams mid-season and trying to learn the offense. He seems to believe he can be much more successful with the Suns if given the chance to go through training camp and mesh with the other players.
The comparisons between the stories of Aaron Brooks and Goran Dragic, who Brooks was traded for, are eerily similar. Both Brooks and Dragic had high expectations going into the 2010/11 season after having very successful seasons in 2009/10.
Once hailed as the future of the Phoenix Suns after a breakout season in 2009/10, Goran Dragic seemed to regress in the 2010/11 season and failed to lead the second unit with much success. This lead the Suns' front office to make a change and bring in Brooks instead who also had a disappointing start to the season in Houston after losing his starting job to Kyle Lowry.
The Suns likely believed that Brooks had a better chance of recapturing his success since he had already shown that he could be a successful starting point guard in the league. But after a lackluster performance to close out last season, will Brooks be given another shot to prove that he's the right player for the job?