Phoenix Suns head coach Monty William reflects on his journey so far with the team as the Suns are only a win away from a berth in the NBA Finals.
The Suns signed Monty Williams in 2019 as their head coach, looking to make an end to the team’s rough patch, who hadn’t made it to the playoffs for over 10-years.
However, the Suns ended the season with a 34-39 record. Thus not being able to make it to the 2020 NBA Playoffs.
Though, Monty Williams’ inception into the franchise had bought some respite for them. Devin Booker was selected in the 2020 NBA All-Star as the first Suns player since Steve Nash. Suns center Deandre Ayton made it to the All-NBA Rookie First Team.
The 2019-20 season was suspended midway due to the pandemic COVID19 but resumed later in the 2020 Orlando Bubble. The Suns were 8-0 undefeated in the Bubble but were yet unable to make it to the play-in tournament.
Suns’ performance in the Bubble gave us a sneak peek into how the team was transitioning and could be a playoff contender in the coming years.
During the 2020-21 off-season, the Suns signed veteran guard Chris Paul reuniting him with his former New Orleans Hornets coach Monty Williams.
There is no doubt that the Suns have outperformed everyone’s expectations in the 2020-21 NBA season. The team was able to secure its 2nd position in the stacked western conference, which earned them their first playoff berth in over 10-years.
How has Monty Williams cultivated relationships with his Phoenix Suns
While reflecting on their recent successful run in the playoffs, William had the following to say regarding his bond with the team:
“I think when they make fun of me, that’s a sign that we’re tight.” Williams would go on to add that when the Suns laugh at something corny that he says, or when they joke about the music they listen to, he knows their relationships are closer than last year.
Williams also shed light on the importance of Chris Paul in his career
“The darkest moment of my life Chris was right there, and in one of the highlights of my career he’s right there.”
Suns’ Head Coach Monty Williams speaks about his gratitude for CP3. pic.twitter.com/kEjH87VsJo
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) June 14, 2021
Earlier this month, Suns star Devin Booker even advocated Williams’ case for coach of the year by stating the following:
“Monty’s come in here and shifted the culture tremendously. I’ve seen the bottom and once he got here, that energy changed. The gym changed. Personnel changed and he developed a culture that we bought into and loved. I always say it every day: The culture is something that makes coming to work every day fun, and that starts with Monty.”
Williams had played a major role in elevating the Suns as a franchise, his inception in the franchise has seen vast improvements in the other players of the roster as well. Deandre Ayton and Cameron Payne are prime examples of this.