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Is T.J. Warren finally getting back to his old form for the Suns?

The post All-Star break numbers seem to say... maybe.

NBA: Washington Wizards at Phoenix Suns Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

In the first few weeks of the Phoenix Suns season T.J. Warren was playing the best ball of his career and was for a while the Suns' leading scorer averaging over 20 points per game. During the first eleven games of the season Warren played 35.9 minutes per game and averaged 21.6 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 2.1 steals. During that time his field goal percentage was 47.4.

Then came the mysterious "head injury" that caused him to miss fourteen games and get limited minutes in several more games between mid-November and late December. When he came back he didn't seem to be the same player but I thought that was probably some rust from inactivity and perhaps some lingering effects from the injury. In the eight December games that he played in his minutes fell to 24.6 per game and his averages fell to 9.8 points, 3.4 rebounds, 0.6 assists and 0.9 steals. His field goal percentage plummeted to 37.0%.

In January his numbers per game were all over the place and he sometimes just seemed out of sync. He started out the month with a great game against the Clippers hitting 60.0% of his shots, scored 25 points and grabbed 8 rebounds along with getting 2 assists, 1 steal and 1 block in 41 minutes. The following night against the Heat he only played 17 minutes, scored only 2 points with 1 block with no rebounds, assists or steals. The entire month was a roller coaster for him where on some nights he seemed to play like his old self and then seemed to almost disappear on others. For the month his averages were 28.3 minutes per game, 10.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 0.8 steals. But oddly his FG percentage was 50.0%, his highest of the season at that point. When you look at the game logs it's obvious that on some of the nights when he didn't score much it was because he just didn't shoot very often but there were also a few nights that his shot was just off.

The pre-All-Star break games in February were much the same story as the January games... another roller coaster ride. T.J. averaged 29.4 minutes per game and 11.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 1.0 steals. A good example of how up and down he was during this time is in how he performed in the two games that the Suns played against New Orleans. In the first game he played 33 minutes, scored 20 points, got 4 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2 steals and one assist while hitting 56.3% from the field. In the second game he played 26 minutes, scored 0 points, got 3 rebounds and had no assists, steals or blocks.

Probably because of his up and down play since returning from that "head injury" there was some talk by fans about perhaps trading T.J. as we headed into the All-Star break and we were quickly approaching the trade deadline. I thought about it myself because T.J. just didn't seem like the same guy that we all gushed over at the beginning of the season anymore.

But in the games following the All-Star break Warren has been playing well consistently again. He's not quite back to putting up the scoring numbers that he was at the beginning of the season but he's getting close and his rebounding has improved significantly. It's a fairly small sample size but in the seven games since the All-Star break Warren has averaged 16.7 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 0.7 steals in 32.4 minutes per game and his FG percentage is 64.3% during that time. His lowest scoring night was 14, his highest was 23 and against the Wizards he recently got his second career double-double (15 points, 10 rebounds).

His three point shooting is still bad (23.8% for the season, 18.2% since the All-Star break) but in almost every other way it seems as though he has almost returned to his pre-”head injury” form (or surpassed it in regard to his recent improvement in rebounding) and is once again a guy that we might want to keep around as this young Suns team continues to grow and develop.

Because of the infusion of youth into the Suns' lineup and all the hype that Tyler Ulis and Alan Williams have deservedly gotten lately perhaps Warren's recent accomplishments have gone mostly unnoticed.

It's time to rectify that.

Welcome back, T.J.

We missed you.

All statistics courtesy of and/or ESPN.

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