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Reports: Suns host Jaylin Williams, Lester Quinones for pre-draft workouts

Suns continue to show more activity than in previous James Jones-led drafts

Arkansas v Duke Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The list of prospects that the Phoenix Suns have shown interest in continues to grow. On Sunday, the team brought in two more guys for workouts, including one that they would certainly have to acquire a pick for.


Jaylin Williams — Arkansas big

Measurements: 6-foot-10, 235 pounds, 7-foot-1 wingspan

Not to be confused with Jalen Williams, a Santa Clara (and Gilbert, AZ) wing likely to be picked in the first round, this big man from Arkansas profiles as a solid piece to a team on both ends.

He reminds me a bit of Golden State Warriors big man Kevon Looney on the offensive end especially. Williams isn’t a guy you have to run a lot of plays for; he’ll get involved through putbacks, passing from the middle of the floor, but unlike Looney, Williams has a bit of shooting range.

Williams stands out defensively. He led the NCAA in charges (54) as a sophomore, including two charges (and two steals) against Duke in the Elite 8; he was +3 in nearly 34 minutes that game, which Arkansas lost by 9.

As far as how that defense will translate to the league, his feet are quick enough that he’d likely be able to survive on some switches, and my philosophy on big defense is that as long as you can do more than just drop coverage, you’re at least playable, which is a good start.

Williams is most likely to go early in the second round, so Phoenix would have to acquire a pick in some way to make the match happen.

On a recent episode of the Locked On Suns podcast that I appeared on, host Brendon Kleen suggested using Aaron Holiday’s restricted free agency rights as a way to get back into the second round, so keep eyes open on that front.


Lester Quiñones — Memphis guard

Measurements: 6-5, 210, n/a

Wanna feel old? When Quiñones (pronounced kin-YO-ness) was a freshman at Memphis under Penny Hardaway, so were Golden State Warriors big James Wiseman and Toronto Raptors big Precious Achiuwa. At the time, Quiñones was expected to be an overqualified third or fourth banana, but he came into Memphis physically underdeveloped — as most freshmen do — and shot a measly 31.3% from three.

He’s since improved in both departments, now weighing the aforementioned 208 pounds, pretty big for a sniper archetype in college, as well as shooting 99-251 (39.4%) from deep over the past two seasons combined. Free throw numbers back up the improvement as he shot 111-155 from the line over the same stretch.

Quiñones can look a little bit like 2018 NBA Champion Nick Young at times, and not just because of the air guitar he sometimes pulls out after made shots. He brings a flair and tenacity to both ends that can really help spark a bench lineup.

He’s expected by most to fall into the undrafted pool, where James Jones and the Suns are free to stretch their negotiating muscles.

It’s not out of reason that an undrafted rookie Lester Quiñones could play a similar role for the Suns to what Landry Shamet did this season, though you can be sure that Quiñones won’t pass up many open shots like Shamet did.

Quiñones seems excited by the prospect of playing for the Suns as well; he shared this post on his Instagram on Sunday: