Deandre Ayton was crucial to the Phoenix Suns being able to make the NBA Finals due to his defensive prowess and rebounding. He averaged 14.4 PPG and 10.5 RPG over the course of the 2020-21 regular season and elevated his averages to 15.8 PPG and 11.8 RPG in the playoffs.
Despite the fact that Ayton had a really good year, he and the Phoenix Suns were unable to come to an agreement on a contract extension. According to Suns' GM James Jones, Ayton wanted a 5-year max contract, which the Suns were not willing to give.
Chris Paul has recently commented on Deandre Ayton's situation when speaking to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports and stated that Ayton "knows what he has to do" in order to get that lucrative deal he desires. Paul also stated that the biggest thing is to "go out there and win games".
With D.A. and his situation, we talked about it. He knows what he has to do. The goal for everybody is to see everyone getting paid. His situation is what it is, but it’s going to work out for him. We hope it works out for him. The biggest thing we know we can do is go out there and win games.
There are a lot of teams that were considered contenders ahead of the season, and the Phoenix Suns were one of them. While other teams may have more star power, the Phoenix Suns are a great team, that is led by one of the most explosive young scorers in the league in Devin Booker. They definitely have a shot to potentially make the Finals and finish the job.
Deandre Ayton making an improvement will be key to the Suns' chances, though he has started the season slow thus far, only averaging 10.3 PPG and 8.0 RPG. Ayton improving will be great for both him and the franchise because he will get his big deal while the franchise will perform even better on the court.