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Alvin Gentry Press Conference: We are going to improve defensively

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The Phoenix Suns held a press conference today to officially announce the signing of Alvin Gentry as the next head coach. Gentry signed a two-year deal with an option for a third year based on team performance.

Our friends at Sports 620 KTAR were on hand and shared the audio from the event.

Here's some key points:

  • Gentry will retain his assistants (Majerle, Cartwright, Kokoskov) and said Mark West will help out as he did late last season
  • Gentry will represent the Suns at the NBA Draft Lottery on May 19th (and joked that if Blake Griffin is available that they would draft him....Suns have the 14th pick with a point-5 percent chance to get the number-one pick)
  • Gentry represented the Clippers back in 2001 when they moved up from 8th to 2nd and eventually drafted Tyson Chandler---then traded him to Chicago for Elton Brand
  • Gentry stressed the need for the Suns to focus on the defense and improve the pick and roll coverage
  • The Suns won't start bringing guys in for pre-draft workouts until the end of the month
  • Kerr said with respect to the roster and the financial ramifications that they don't have to do anything. "Our hands are not tied." He made it sound like ownership was okay with paying the luxury tax again saying if they have to "grind our way through this year" they will. He pointed out that in a year's time they will have significant financial flexibility (i.e. Shaq comes off the books)
  • The Suns will be paying two head coaches over the next two seasons: Porter's final two years of a three-year contract and the first two years of Gentry's two-year contract (that does include a third year option)
  • Kerr said their number-one priority now is signing Steve Nash to a contract extension. Kerr added that he and Nash met a couple of weeks ago
  • Kerr said Amare Stoudemire is progressing. There is still fluid in Stoudemire's eye that needs to drain out so Stoudemire isn't running yet but should be ready to get back out on the floor soon
  • Kerr addressed the draft saying they likely will take the best player available with the idea "that player may not play much this year"

Kerr comments

Gentry comments

Gentry on Sports 620 KTAR Gambo and Ash show