Hedo Part Time Starter

by Paul Raymond | Posted on Friday, November 12th, 2010

A report by Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic says that Phoenix Suns forward Hedo Turkoglu will be spending some time as a bench player. Coach Alvin Gentry made this decision after watching Turkoglu struggle Monday against the Memphis Grizzlies big men Zack Randolph and Marc Gasol.

“I will not play Hedo against a guy like Zack Randolph,” Gentry said. “It’s unfair to him.

“I’d rather have him in the game five minutes later where he has no fouls than to take him out in the first five minutes.” (from Arizona Republic)

In seven games he’s already racked up 27 fouls, that’s just under four per game. That’s way too many for a starter, maybe it is good to have come off the bench. Unfortunately, I don’t believe its just because he’s been defending bigger guys.

What I think is really happening is that Hedo is on his legs. Over the past four seasons his numbers have been dropping offensively and defensively. He’s still technically a big guy but he just doesn’t look like he has the toughness to compete with the younger more versatile post players of the Western Conference. Which means coming off the bench could be the best option for him.

Here’s the reason; if he comes into the game five minutes after tip he’ll be going up against starters that could be tiring OR lesser quality bench players. If he goes against bench players he should be able to take advantage as he’s still a decent talent. If he’s going against a winded starter they won’t be able to take advantage of him physically, which is whats currently happening.

If I was Gentry, I’d make Hedo a full time bench player. Against lesser competition he can still be very effective, so why not use him in a role he’d be best suited for. Another reason is consistency if he’s switching Hedo and Hakim Warrick nightly they won’t have that. For the Suns to succeed they need a consistent lineup with a predictable rotation of players.

So make the switch and make it once!

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