Hello again, Suns fans. As promised, here is part two of the two-part series looking back on the best Suns to ever wear each jersey number. For those who missed it, part one can be found here.
Just a reminder that the gaps in the numbers are because the following numbers have never been worn by a Sun: 36, 37, 38, 39, 48, 49, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 99.
25 Gail Goodrich
Contenders: Oliver Miller, Jake Tsakalidis
Goodrich was acquired by the expansion Phoenix Suns in 1968 and spent the first two seasons of the franchise’s existence as its starting point guard. Over those two seasons, he averaged 21.9 points, 6.9 assists, and 4.8 rebounds and made the 1969 All-Star team. Goodrich’s 21.9 points per game ranks third in franchise history and his 39.9 minutes per game is first.
26 Shannon Brown
Contenders: Bill Martin, Jud Buechler
Of the three players ever to wear 26 for the Suns, Brown was the most prolific. His scoring average of 10.7 earned over two seasons with the Suns is the highest of his career, and he scored a career-high 32 points against the San Antonio Spurs on Mar. 27, 2012. Doing something impressive against the Spurs always helps a player’s cause.
27 Malcolm Mackey
Contender: Tony Dumas
This one was a real head scratcher. While Dumas had a higher scoring average with Phoenix (2.3 to 1.5), Mackey had better per 36 numbers and played in more games (22 to 6) during his lone season in Phoenix. Also, his name — Malcolm Malik Mackey — is alliterative, so he gets the edge.
28 Andrew Lang
Drafted by Phoenix in 1988, Lang spent his first four seasons with the Suns and averaged 4.8 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks in that time. His blocks total (201) and blocks per game average (2.5) from his 1991-92 season both rank second in franchise history for a single season, and his career blocks average ranks third.
29 Paul Silas
Contender: Alando Tucker
Silas spent three seasons in Phoenix from 1969-70 to 1971-72, averaging 14.1 points and 12.1 rebounds per game. He made the All-Star team in 1972 and was named to two All-Defensive teams over that span. Silas still ranks first in team history for rebounds per game and is tied with Tyson Chandler for most rebounds in a single game in team history with 27.
30 Clifford Robinson
Contenders: Ron Lee, Jon Leuer
Robinson played for Phoenix from 1997-98 to 2000-01 and averaged 16.4 points and 4.6 rebounds. Uncle Cliffy made the All-Defensive team for the 1999-00 season and scored a career-high 50 points against the Denver Nuggets on Jan. 16, 2000.
31 Shawn Marion
Contenders: Jim Fox, Kurt Rambis
Marion was drafted by the Suns in 1999 and would go on to play eight and a half seasons with Phoenix, averaging 18.4 points and 10 rebounds. Nicknamed The Matrix by Kenny Smith, he made four All-Star teams, All-Rookie Second Team, and two All-NBA teams during his Suns tenure. Marion also ranks in the franchise’s top five for minutes, minutes per game, field goals, 3-pointers, offensive rebounds, defensive rebounds, total rebounds, rebounds per game, steals, steals per game, blocks, blocks per game, points, points per game, and player efficiency rating.
He entered the Phoenix Suns Ring of Honor in…wait, what? You’re kidding.
32 Jason Kidd
Contenders: Amar’e Stoudemire, Shaquille O’Neal
Kidd faced some tough challengers for this place, especially from young Amar’e, but STAT missing the 2005-06 season really handed this one to Kidd.
Over four and a half seasons with the Suns from 1996-97 to 2000-01, Kidd averaged 14.4 points, 9.7 assists, and 2.1 steals per game. He also made three All-Star teams, three All-NBA teams, three All-Defensive teams, and led the league in assists from 1998-99 to 2000-01. He ranks in the top five for assists, minutes per game, and steals per game and is the franchise leader in assists per game and triple-doubles (25).
He also had that blond hair phase back in 2000.
33 Alvan Adams
Contenders: Charlie Scott, Grant Hill
Only three players have ever worn number 33 for Phoenix, but all three had a legitimate claim to the top spot here and would have been the favorites had they worn almost any other number, making this the most competitive jersey number in team history. Ultimately, as with the Ring of Honor, Adams won out.
Adams spent his entire 13-year career in Phoenix, where he averaged 14.1 points, 7 rebounds, and 4.1 assists as one of the first playmaking centers in NBA history. He won Rookie of the Year in 1976 as one of the driving forces behind Phoenix’s unlikely trip to the NBA Finals that season and was named to his only All-Star team that season as well. The Oklahoma Kid ranks in the franchise’s top five for field goals, free throws, offensive rebounds, defensive rebounds, total rebounds, assists, steals, blocks, and points and is the franchise’s all-time leader for games and minutes. Adams entered the Ring of Honor in 1988.
34 Charles Barkley
Contenders: Antonio McDyess, John Shumate
Sir Charles only spent four seasons with the Suns, but it sure felt like more. Still, he made the most of it, averaging 23.4 points and 11.5 rebounds while playing at the Purple Palace. Winning the MVP award in 1993, he was the engine that propelled Phoenix to just its second Finals appearance ever and would go on to be a four-time All Star and four-time All-NBA performer. Barkley ranks in the franchise’s top five for defensive rebounds, points per game, rebounds per game, and defensive rebound percentage and leads the franchise in player efficiency rating and total rebound percentage. He also holds the franchise playoff records for most points (56) and rebounds (24) in a single game, with the 24 rebounds coming as part of a monstrous 44-point, 24-rebound effort to close out the Seattle Sonics in Game 7 of the 1993 Western Conference Finals.
Barkley entered the Ring of Honor in 2004.
35 Armen Gilliam
Contenders: Xavier McDaniel, Mirza Teletovic
Drafted second overall by the Suns in 1987 (I will ignore how that was three spots above Scottie Pippen and nine spots ahead of Reggie Miller), Gilliam — who spelled his first name Armon at the time — spent two and a half seasons with the team. He averaged 14.7 points and 7.2 rebounds over that span and was named to the All-Rookie First Team.
40 Ricky Sobers
Contenders: Mike Bantom, Kurt Thomas
Sobers’ numbers weren’t overly impressive in his two seasons with the Suns, averaging just under 12 points per game from 1975-76 to 1976-77 after switching early on from number 4 to 40, but his ability to get into fights during the 1976 playoff run, especially with the Golden State Warriors’ Rick Barry, really put him over the top.
41 Neal Walk
Contender: Mark West
Walk’s tenure with the Suns will forever be (unfairly) linked to the career of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar after Phoenix lost the coin flip in 1969, but Walk’s five seasons spent in a Suns uniform were not bad. He averaged 14.7 points and 8.9 rebounds and had a stellar 1973-74 campaign of 20.2 points and 12.4 rebounds. But that shadow always followed him.
42 Connie Hawkins
The Hawk joined Phoenix from the ABA in 1969-70 at age 27 and spent the next four and a half seasons with the Suns, averaging 20.5 points, 9 rebounds, and 4.3 assists. The New York playground legend spent his best years away from the spotlight after being unduly implicated in a gambling scandal but still made four All-Star teams and an All-NBA team with the Suns. He ranks in the team’s top ten for points per game, rebounds, rebounds per game, and minutes per game. Hawkins was the very first member of the Ring of Honor, with his number retired in 1976.
43 Jake Voskuhl
Contenders: Dave Lattin, Chris Carr, Kris Humphries
Voskuhl played for Phoenix from 2001-02 to 2004-05 and averaged 4.7 points and four rebounds as a reliable if unspectacular center. Known as Little Jake alongside Big Jake Tsakalidis, Voskuhl’s shining moment came in Game 4 of the 2003 first-round playoff series when he made the game winner for Phoenix against the Spurs. He also ranks ninth in team history for offensive rebound percentage.
44 Paul Westphal
Contenders: Gary Gregor, Jerry Chambers
Westphal spent six seasons with the Suns, with five consecutive from 1975-76 to 1979-80 and a swan song in 1983-84. Over those six seasons, Westy averaged 20.6 points and 5.2 assists and was named to four All-Star teams and four All-NBA teams. He was a key contributor to the 1976 Finals team and ranks in the top ten in team history for field goals, free throws, assists, assists per game, steals, steals per game, points, points per game, assist percentage, and player efficiency rating. Westphal entered the Ring of Honor in 1989.
45 A.C. Green
Contenders: Bo Outlaw, Jeff Cook
Better known for his impressive streaks (consecutive games played and abstinence), Green was a solid contributor for the Suns over his three and a half seasons with the team. He averaged 10.6 points and 7.7 rebounds from 1993-94 to 1996-97 before being traded to the Dallas Mavericks as part of the Jason Kidd deal.
46 Bo Outlaw
Outlaw made his greatest contributions to the Suns wearing number 45, but when he returned to Phoenix as a free agent for the 2004-05 season, Steven Hunter was already wearing it. So Outlaw wore number 46 instead and ensured his place in the Suns pantheon by averaging 0.7 points and 1.4 rebounds over 39 games. Bo wasn’t exactly a Mike D’Antoni-type player, what with his offensive limitations that included one of the most comical free throw strokes of all time.
47 Scott Williams
Another player who stands alone with his number, Williams pulled number 47 out of a hat back in 2002-03 and wore it until being waived midway through the 2003-04 season. He did, however, average 4.6 points and 3.1 rebounds with Phoenix.
50 Eddie House
Contenders: William Bedford, Joel Kramer
House was as streaky as they came as a shooter, but when he got hot, the man with the lightning-fast trigger could not be stopped. He averaged 9.8 points during the 2005-06 season with the Suns and scored a then-career-high 31 points against the Utah Jazz off the bench.
51 Stefano Rusconi
Contender: Ian Lockhart
What do you call a man who averaged a sparkling 1.1 points and 0.9 rebounds over seven games during the 1995-96 season? The best Phoenix Sun to ever wear number 51, that’s what. Maybe things would have been different had Ian Lockhart played more than two minutes in his lone NBA appearance, but he didn’t, leaving the Italian to reign supreme.
52 Jordan McRae
Contenders: Eric Piatkowski, Chucky Brown
The legend of Jordan McRae began with a 10-day contract in 2016 and lasted all the way through to a second 10-day contract. During that glorious stretch, McRae averaged 5.3 points and 1.4 assists for the Suns before moving on and leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to their first ever championship. Ah, what might’ve been for the Suns had Robert Sarver simply broken bread.
53 James Edwards
Contender: Rich Kelley
Over parts of six seasons with the Phoenix Suns from 1982-83 to 1987-88, Edwards averaged 14.7 points and 5.6 rebounds. But he may be best remembered for that incredible mustache.
54 Rodney Rogers
Contenders: Ed Pinckney, Brian Skinner
Rogers spent two and a half seasons with the Suns as a burly sixth man with a long-range stroke, averaging 12.9 points and 4.9 rebounds while shooting 37.2-percent from 3-point range. He won the 1999-00 Sixth Man of the Year award with averages of 13.8 points and 5.5 rebounds with 43.9-percent 3-point shooting.
55 Earl Williams
Contenders: Jahidi White, Earl Clark
Williams, apparently known as Earl The Twirl since The Pearl was already taken, was drafted 49th overall by Phoenix and spent the 1974-75 season with the Suns, averaging 4.7 points and 5.8 rebounds. The Twirl was traded prior to the 1975-76 season — when Phoenix went to the Finals. I’m not saying these two events are connected; I’m just pointing out that they happened.
98 Hamed Haddadi
Jumping all the way to number 98, we have everyone’s favorite name to say — Haddadi! Chosen because it was his home country Iran’s telephone country code, Haddadi averaged 4.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks over 17 games of the 2012-13 season. Now say it one more time for the road…Haddadi!