Deandre Ayton was quiet and determined in his first two press conferences this offseason.
The Phoenix Suns’ starting center — who signed a four-year, $133 million offer sheet with the Indiana Pacers in restricted free agency that the Suns reportedly matched within two minutes — was especially brief with his feelings about returning to Phoenix.
“I was happy. It was all done, I guess,” Ayton said at the Suns’ Media Day.
Ayton later said at the Suns’ first day of training camp he and coach Monty Williams had not talked since the team’s 123-90 loss to the Dallas Mavericks in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals last season. It brought questions to whether or not Ayton was truly happy to be back in the Valley.
But, as he indicated in his press conferences, he was determined to get to work. That was apparent in the Suns’ preseason opener even though they loss to the NBL’s Adelaide 36ers.
Ayton tied starting forward Mikal Bridges with 22 points on 11-of-14 shooting and six rebounds in 22 minutes of action. He was active and efficient, taking the most shots of Phoenix’s starters and making the most of them.
“Just trying to be aggressive and do some of the things I’ve been working on in the offseason,” Ayton said. “Just to see where I’m at, getting to the rim and finding spots where I’m comfortable at on the floor. And just being available for my teammates when they’re ready to make quick decisions.”
You can see everything Ayton had to say in the video above.