Two days after firing their general manager, the Phoenix Suns are favoring a move to promote interim general manager James Jones to the franchise’s permanent position, ESPN reported Tuesday.
League sources told Adrian Wojnarowski that owner Robert Sarver is leaning toward handing the full-time GM Job to Jones, a former player who is sharing supervision of basketball operations with assistant GM Trevor Bukstein after the team fired Ryan McDonough on Sunday night. The Suns announced the move on Monday, just nine days before they tip off their season on Oct. 17 against the Dallas Mavericks.
Jones had been serving as the Suns Vice President of Basketball Operations after being hired by Sarver last year. According to Wojnarowski, “Sarver has left little, if any, doubt that Jones will be leading Phoenix’s basketball operations into the future,” according to league sources.
In the interim Jones is charged with oversight basketball operations and Bukstein will handle player transactions.
The McDonough firing, which raised eyebrows around the NBA after he had scored a contract extension last summer and presided over a series of offseason moves and draft selections, was the latest in a current of atypical management decisions from Sarver.
Last season, the Suns fired head coach Earl Watson six days into the regular season. On Nov. 7, 2017, Sarver signed off on the team’s trade of disgruntled point guard Eric Bledsoe to the Milwaukee Bucks.
Jones played 14 seasons in the NBA, winning three NBA titles alongside LeBron James — two with the Miami Heat, one with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The sharpshooter knocked down 766 career 3-pointers in 709 games, averaging 5.2 points per game in playing for Indiana (2003-05), Phoenix (2005-07), Portland (2007-08), MIami (2008-14) and Cleveland (2014-17).
—Field Level Media