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Farewell, Saben Lee

The Phoenix native’s contract has expired.

Toronto Raptors v Phoenix Suns Photo by Kate Frese/NBAE via Getty Images

On Tuesday afternoon, the Phoenix Suns parted ways with backup point guard Saben Lee.

Lee, a Phoenix native who graduated from Corona del Sol High School in 2017, signed a two-day contract with the Suns on January 11. He signed a second contract on January 21. He played in 10 games for the Suns. In that time, he averaged 7.0 points per game, 3.3 assists per game, shot 45.5% from the field, and 50% from beyond the arc.

His most notable game was against the Brooklyn Nets, in which he scored 15 points off of the bench on 6-of-11 shooting, adding 6 assists in the victory.

Lee did something no player in the history of the Phoenix Suns franchise has ever done. He wore jersey number 38.

This is the business. The Phoenix Suns were in dire need of assistance at the guard position. While Sabin Lee was a member of the team, Devin Booker, Chris Paul, Cameron Payne, and Landry Shamet all found themselves – at one point, or another – on the injured list.

Lee, who had been a member of the Summer League Suns, provided much-needed assistance to the Suns to help them stay afloat as they navigated their injuries. The team was 7-5 while he was on the roster.

Why didn’t the Suns sign him to another 10-day? Teams can sign individual players to a maximum of two 10-day contracts, after which they must sign the player to a two-way contract, a full-season contract or let them go. The Suns do have a full roster spot open, but with the trade deadline just nine days away now it’s important to keep flexible until that day passes and see what spots are left.

What’s next for Lee? We will most likely see him return to the G League, where he has spent time with the Motor City Cruise and Raptors 905 in the past. We could also see another team attempt to bring him onto the roster under a 10-day contract as a stopgap. The debate over whether James Jones should keep Sabin Lee or Duane Washington, Jr. – which wasn’t really a debate at all – is over. For now.

Let’s see what happens after the trade deadline next week. Depending on who comes or goes, the Suns may find room for Lee again some day.

Thank you Sabin Lee for your contributions to your hometown team and best of luck to you moving forward.

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