Stanley Johnson: It’s going to take the first part of the season for him to find his groove and be the stud we’re all expecting. Don’t expect that player out of the gate. His size and strength is obvious and formidable. He can go anywhere he wants on the floor and nobody is going to keep him from that spot. He still needs to realize that this team has a ton of offensive weapons and he doesn’t need to be the primary scorer all the time. He is a great passer, but doesn’t do it very much. On the occasions that he does, it works out great, especially when he’s throwing an alley-oop to Rondae. He is capable of knocking most shots down, including the 3-ball, but needs to learn to take them within the flow of the offense.
Matt Korcheck: Same excellent role player that he was last year. Sets good screens, boxes out, very active on the offensive glass looking to get the ball and put it right back up for a layup. If Arizona gets into foul trouble and they need Korcheck, he’ll provide very solid minutes. Clearly doesn’t have the skill of the other bigs, but he is reliable if needed to give the bigs a break.
Dusan Ristic: Slightly awkward, and looks slender, but is very strong. He has no problem banging down low, which may lead to him picking up fouls, but he’s not afraid. Very good with the ball offensively around the basket. Also very good at running the floor and catching the ball on the run. Does a nice job of keeping the ball high for a big, doesn’t tend to bring it down low and if he starts with it low, he gets it up high immediately.
Eliott Pitts: He’s an excellent 3-point shooter and if he’s open and gets his feet set, it’s probably going in. Only problem is he doesn’t really bring anything else to the table. Everyone above him on the depth chart is capable of doing that and more. As of right now, he’s the odd man out of the York-Allen-Pitts battle. York and Allen are much better athletes than he is and York shoots the 3-ball just as well as Pitts.
Overall: Expectations of seeing a Top 5 team in practice right now are unfair. There are flashes that this team is going to be great, but it’s gonna take some time to put it all together and start clicking on all cylinders. There is no doubt they’ll get there. Just need more than five practices to be there. The athleticism and skill is special. Once everyone gets on the same page, it’s going to be scary. When the team moves the ball and cuts, they look amazing and get excellent shots. When they stand around and wait for someone else to make something happen, it gets ugly. Miller recognizes that and addresses that and it’ll get straightened out.