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Suns Hold Open Tryouts for Point Guards

On Monday, the Suns will be holding an unusual work out for six guys looking to fill a roster spot and need for another point guard. Word is that the Suns will likely only sign the survivor of this high stakes game of duck duck goose to a 10 day roster.

This will give the Suns a low risk chance to try a guy out and according to Suns Sr. VP Dave Griffin also wait and see if a veteran point guard gets bought out. Could he be talking about Marbury? Lord, let's hope not.

The six guys that will be here Monday are a mix of vets and youngsters ranging from the 26 year old Walker Russell to the 83 year old Darrell Armstrong.


Darrell Armstrong


Troy Hudson


Dee Brown


Eddie Gill


Walker Russell


Damon Stoudamire

Based on pictures alone, I am sure most of you would pick Dee Brown but let's dig a bit deeper and also hear from the coach of one of these players.

In order of my preference for the roster spot here's the 6 finalists for Project Suns Break Away:

#1 Dee Brown

Aside from auditioning for a spot on The, Dee Brown brings the best combination of NBA experience with the right skill set for the Suns. Brown is known as a defensive point guard that plays with tenacity and grit. Here's a breakdown from Wizards blog Truth About It.

Dee Brown is obviously small, so bigger PGs can potentially take advantage of this, but otherwise, he's like a gnat on D. He gets up into the guy he is covering, but doesn't gamble too much. In a preseason game against the Spurs, Brown was adept at trying to contain Tony Parker and can help combat similar quick PGs. I never noticed a lack of effort on defense from Brown.

...if the idea is to run with Brown in the game, he's intent on getting the ball up the floor as fast as possible, but has the wherewithal to pull out if nothing is there.

Oh yea, the guy is also a rapper (check out his myspace!)

He's also apparently very blessed

#2 Eddie Gill

Eddie is a guy that at the rip old age of 30 is a prototypical NBA bubble player. He's been with 6 different NBA teams getting his most minutes in 04-05 for the Pacers where he played in 72 games and put up some unimpressive numbers.

Eddie is currently playing for the Colorado 14ers of the NBADL. This morning I caught up with his coach Bob MacKinnon to learn about bit more about Eddie.

Coach MacKinnon described Eddie as a winner and a professional who will use his NBA experience to fit in with the Suns vets. He's a pure point guard and great distributor who understands the game and makes players around him better.

His coach calls him a tenacious defender who can drive and kick as well as knock down the open shot. His D-league stats support that with 15ppg on top of 5 rebounds and 7 assists. His turnover ratio is a low 2.5.

You might not know that Eddie scored the eight millionth point in NBA history while playing for the Nets on April 15th, 2001.

You can hear the full interview with Coach MacKinnon here.


#3 Troy Hudson

Troy is another guy that's around the NBA having his best year in Minnesota where he earned an interesting nickname:

However, Hudson's most productive seasons came with the Minnesota Timberwolves, where he averaged a career-best 14.2 pts and 5.7 assists in 2002-03, also receiving the nickname "Laker Killer" for his outstanding postseason play against the Los Angeles Lakers, where he increased his numbers to 23.5 points in a 2-4 first-round loss

Since being cut by the Warriors a year ago, he doesn't seem to be playing anywhere. At least not playing basketball. He is working hard on his music career.

His NBA numbers are better then Gill's but if the guy isn't playing how bad does he really want this? Perhaps you can ask him at his myspace...

I am putting him 3rd instead of 4th purly based on the nickname. Deserved or not.

#4 Darrell Armstrong

At two years older then me Darrell is ancient. He's also the wild card in this bunch. If he's in great shape and willing to come in and not play much then he could be a great fit. He's the kind of guy that would easily imagine coming off the bench in a crucial playoff game and straight nailing a big shot.

It seems more likely that the Suns are going to give the backup PG minutes to LB (since his time at the 2 is diminished) so whomever the Suns sign isn't going to see all that much court time. Would DA be ok with that or will he be Jalen Rose bitter?

You can't knock Darrell's career and if the Suns do sign him you know it won't be a bad move.

#5 Walker Russell Jr

Walker is the player we know the least about. He's in his second year in the D league playing now with the Mad Ants. Here's what Draft Express says about him:

There is not a whole lot to talk about here, besides possibly Fort Wayne’s returning point guard, Walker Russell Jr. He was bought out of his contract last season by ACB squad Estudiantes after an excellent showing in the D-League showcase, but was unable to make much of an impact there. He’s a real floor general with a high basketball IQ and an excellent knack for running the pick and roll, but his lack of size and perimeter shooting skills don’t leave much room for optimism regarding a hypothetical NBA future.

His numbers in Indiana so far are good (better in fact then Gill) where he's averaging 16pts, 11 assists, 5 rebounds and 2 steals in over 40 mpg.

Numbers and age alone, he's no doubt the best prospect in the bunch. But the Suns don't need a prospect and this kid has no NBA experience to speak of.

# 6 Damon Stoudamire

I am so not interested in Mighty Mouse. After dissing the Suns last year to go play with the Spurs he was unable to contribute anything for them in the playoffs after having averaged 13mpg over 31 games in the regular season.

If the Suns sign Damon we will know just how in effect the Wildcats connection really is.

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