Phoenix The GM who signed up for this pick decided to vanish.  I'll leave it to the reader to imagine what I think about him.  Anyway, a special thanks to Dick Mays who filled in at the last minute.  Phoenix uses the 25th pick to select:

Mamadou N'diaye, C, 7'0", Auburn

I. Draft History

The Phoenix Suns do not have a history of building their team on the draft. Many of their draft picks have been traded.

Some notable past draft selections

  • 1995: Michael Finley 21th pick
  • 1999: Shawn Marion 9th pick

Michael Finley was notable since he was part of a deal that brought Jason Kidd to the Suns in 1996.

II. Team Needs

The Suns are a veteran team with the only weakness at the Center position. Luc Longley was a  disappointment, journeyman backup center Oliver Miller actually out played Luc. (sorry Eric). The Suns have a plethora of good forwards, and will probably shop their first round draft pick and one of their forwards for a strong rebounding and defensive center. If the Suns are going to win it all, they must have an answer at Center that can keep Shaq from crushing them.

Good luck. Not many teams have an answer to Shaq. The Suns could also use a little backcourt help for Penny and Kidd. K.J. was great coming out of retirement, but it is unlikely the Suns can  get another year out of him.

III. Analysis


Phoenix has the best backcourt tandum in the league with Penny Hardaway and Jason Kidd.

  • Jason Kidd, 94, 2nd pick, traded from Mavs in 96 for Michael Finley and players (MM .530)
  • Penny Hardaway, 93, 3rd pick, traded Aug 99, from Magic for two first round draft choices (MM 0.489)

Kidd actually had an off season. His per minute Magic Metric per minute rating of .53 was almost .1 points higher the previous season when he was the Magic Metric choice for MVP.

How about Suns all-time assists leader Kevin Johnson (MM .491!) out of retirement!


Phoenix has a strong field of forwards, with Cliff Robinson taking turns at center.

  • Clifford Robinson, Free Agent from Portland, 89 36th (MM 0.470)
  • Tom Gugliotta, 92, 6th pick Free Agent out of Minnesota (MM 0.462)
  • Shawn Marion, 99, 9th pick (MM 0.483)
  • Rodney Rodgers, 93, 9th pick Free Agent (MM 0.492)


Here is where the Suns weakness shows, but Miller actually had respectable numbers in spite of his weight.
  • Luc Longley Trade with Chicago in 99 (MM 0.324)
  • Oliver Miller Free Agent (MM .440)

IV. My Selection

The question is, how to get past the Lakers and Shaquille. My first thought would be to make a trade with Atlanta for Mutumbo. Perhaps Atlanta would be interested in Georgia Tech kid, Jason Collier. Perhaps Cliff Robinson and pick #25 for Mutombo. Don't know if that could happen because of the  salary cap. Don't know if Mutombo has an answer for the Shaq attack.

Second thought is to pull the Sabonis tactic. Get a 3 point threat at center, and pull Shaq out. Perhaps draft Jason Collier with the pick.

Third thought is to keep Luc, and Oliver and add another body to Hack-a-Shaq. Go for the best athelete available, and pick Mamadou N'diaye.

Craig Simpson - Usenet Draft Commissioner
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