Eddie Johnson, in all his rambling incoherence, managed to sum up the situation concisely at the end of this video: Dragan Bender needs to work on being able to shoot the ball more often. That means not always making the easy pass when the ball hits your hands. That means making an effort to score in situations other than on open jumpshots or where there are obvious driving lanes. This was the last game of the season for him, and the Suns obviously put a lineup out there that had no go-to first option or even a second or third option, so he should have had a bit more offensive freedom, but he ended up only taking six shots. And that’s the problem.
The Suns would love to have a sweet-shooting bigman as part of their CORE going forward, but Bender, up to this point, has not played like a player who deserves to be a part of any team’s CORE other than maybe as a peripheral fourth or fifth CORE member. So here’s what I want to see from him in the off-season: sweaty videos of him lifting weights, sweaty videos of him hitting turnaround jumpers over short white trainers, sweaty videos of him in Europe learning from the best (since they’re European I assume they’re the best), and sweaty videos of him doing that drill where you high-step through a ladder that’s on the floor. All these videos should have appropriately fresh beats. That way I know that Bender is doing what it takes to come into next season more aggressive and more NBA-viable.