The Phoenix Suns are taking a cautious approach towards extending the contracts of youngsters Alex Len and Archie Goodwin, who were both drafted by the team in 2013.
Both Len and Goodwin are now eligible for contract extensions.
The Suns front office have until the Oct. 31 deadline to sign both players to extensions.
Otherwise, both Goodwin and Len will become restricted free agents next July and could potentially attract interested suitors willing to outbid the Suns.
There is a surplus of young talent on the Suns roster, especially after the recent additions of Dragan Bender, Marquese Chriss and Tyler Ulis.
Len, who averaged a career-high 9.0 points and 7.6 rebounds from 22.3 minutes per game last season, is expected to compete with veteran Tyson Chandler for the starting center spot.
In fact, Len started 46 games out of 78 last season but struggled to protect the rim efficiently as the Suns emerged as one of the worst defensive units in the league.
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Phoenix Suns: Decision time
Even though both Len and Goodwin have shown potential to become starters in the league, it seems like Suns general manger Ryan McDonough isn’t looking to extend them just yet.
“I think we want to see how it goes with training camp, preseason. I feel like those rookie extension deals get done if they’re fair for both sides,” McDonough told ArizonaSports.com on Wednesday.
McDonough hinted that neither Lin nor Goodwin had done enough to justify a max extension.
“A few of them are the no-brainers; the max extensions, stuff like that. With players as young as those two guys are, there’s obviously some projection involved as well — it’s not just what they are now but what they’re going to become in the next four, five years,” added the Suns GM.
This offseason, plenty of young players signed max rookie extensions despite failing to become established stars in the league. The likes of Allen Crabbe and Evan Fourner received max contracts.
Besides Crabbe and Foruner, the likes of Giannis Antetokounmpo, C.J. McCollum and Harrison Barnes also signed lucrative rookie extensions.
However, Suns seem to want to value their max contracts and not given them out to players who haven’t earned it.
“With the players, it’s some risk tolerance, too,” added McDonough, before concluding that the Suns will revisit their decision ahead of preseason.
The Phoenix Suns will begin their preseason against the San Antonio Spurs on Oct. 3.