Contributing Writer: Jordan Kartchner (@J_Kartch)
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the (to be named later) Stadium/Arena – seriously, when is the arena getting a name? – was stirring, not even the Gorilla.
The Valley stockings were hung by the revamped Pavilion with care, in hopes that St Nicholas (no, not @nippstick) soon would be there.
The players were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of titles danced in their heads.
And James Jones in nightgown and Monty in his cap, had just settled their brains for a long deserved nap.
When out on the court arose such a clatter, they sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the concord they flew like a flash, down through the tunnel to the bleachers they dashed.
The new theater lights shown bright on the court, gave the lustre of a real franchise of our favorite sport.
When, what to their wandering eyes should appear, but stupid old me dressed up like Santa grinning ear to ear.
Alright, alright that’s enough of that. I’m sorry you had to read that stupidity, but get used to it. This Christmas, Santa asked for my help. Gifts for the members of the Suns. I so graciously accepted. I’m happy to report that all the players and staff have made the Nice List. Though, Jevon picking up Santa 94 feet last Christmas Eve while he was trying to deliver presents almost got him moved to the Naughty List. So, let’s get started, shall we?
To The leaders:
James Jones – For James, I went with a more preemptive gift. I gave him the Executive of the Year Award a few months early. I understand the Lakers had a great offseason as well and it could go to Rob Pelinka. However, he just got hardware opening night so I’m not letting him get 2 NBA awards in one year, sorry.
Monty Williams – Coach was one of my toughest gifts. I battled between a team centered gift or a personal gift. Ultimately, I decided on something personal. Monty has given so much of himself to the game and this team already that I wanted to give back to him. He gets a collection of all of his favorite movies. With them are the instructions to spend time to sit down and enjoy them with his family. It will also likely lead to more team movie nights as well like was had in the bubble. There’s your 2 for 1.
Chris Paul – Well, gifting a present to a man who is set to make 40 million this year isn’t exactly easy. So, I went with a gift that is in the style of seeing Oz. No, not a heart or a brain. He’s got both in bunches. Health. Yes, I’m giving him this gift selfishly because I want him to start all 72 games, sue me. If CP3 can remain healthy, good things are in store for this team. Also throwing in some bottles of wine to add to his collection. Salud! (get it? – lol)
Devin Booker – Similar to Chris, what do you give a 24 year old on a max contract and is dating a super model? And thanks to James Jones he has a legitimate NBA roster for the first time in his career. First off, respect. This year he will finally get the respect he deserves. Second gift, some dog treats for his Cane Corso. Not sure what the dog’s name is maybe Kellan or Mike the investigatory can help us with that. Last but not least, some lucky 7’s lottery tickets. Hopefully these hit and he’s finally able to hit that pesky 7th 3 in a game.
Jevon Carter – Well, your first gift was me making Santa keep you on the nice list. You’re welcome. You and Jae are twinning, however. Guarding 94 feet is exhausting, get some good sleep my friend.
Cam Payne – A dose of the bubble life. I’m not sure what it was with the bubble but I’m making a dose of it. Do that and you’ll have no problem keeping your spot.
Langston Galloway – A traffic light that is always set to green. You have a beautiful shot, if you’re open, let it fly.
E’Twaun Moore – Point Guard health. In preseason you unfairly got asked to play out of position. Now you won’t have to.
Ty-Shon Alexander – For Ty, my best gift yet. The gift of time. Time to grow and develop. Time with Chris Paul. The time to live out your dream of guarding Devin Booker in practice. Being drafted in the first group in a TIME where Suns will actually give you a fighting chance to succeed.
Mikal Bridges – Mikal Bridges. Mikal Bridges. I mean, Mikal Bridges, right? So for the man himself, we’re starting with a Swat vehicle. I’d get him a normal squad car, but he takes too many people to Mikal Jail each night for a typical cop car. Also, an at home tailor. I imagine it’s tough to find clothes with arm length as his for someone who is skinny. Don’t worry, I got you. He gets a pen as well.
Jae Crowder – Jae Crowder is fresh off a run to the finals. The offseason was shorter than normal. We’re gifting him the best bed Santa can find. He’s also raved about the sunsets that Arizona has, I’m adding a camera for him to take pictures of them. Maybe post them on social media next offseason as a recruiting tactic? Just a thought.
Cameron Johnson – First off, some hair products. That afro is looking NICE. Let’s keep it that way. Next, we’re going with a magazine. No, not to read, the guy is a straight shooter, lets up the 3 point volume. To help insure it we’re adding a pitch count clicker like a coach in baseball. But with that present he has to give me one in return, for the count 7 or higher after each game, deal?
Abdel Nader – My first gift to you is a name pronunciation guide to the fans. I’ll make sure they get it right. My second gift is patience. You’re gonna get a chance, just be ready for it.
Deandre Ayton – The big fella. With Chris Paul and more capable guards on the roster he’s going to be gifted the easiest baskets of his career. To go with it we’re going to throw a massage chair his way. He’s going to be super aggressive searching for fouls so he’s gonna need it, right? He also gets a Nerf door hoops to practice dunking. But in all seriousness, let’s go the Milwaukee Bucks to Giannis route and give him a pen. Best Christmas present to me would be him earning it.
Dario Saric – Similar to Cam, we’re throwing in some product. This time for that ‘stache. It’s a beaut.
Jalen Smith – A marketing team. I know you said you aren’t worried about selling goggles but I am. Let’s get some extra cash flow. Branding my friend.
Frank Kaminsky– Welcome back, Frank. Frank gets a fan. No, not that type of fan, he has one of those in @TheRealestJMark, I mean @Espo. A portable cooling fan, you’re always fanning yourself off on the court. Don’t want you to overheat.
Damian Jones– Springs. Your job on this roster is pretty simple. Dunk, rebound, block shots. I’m gonna make that easier for you.
To end this piece, a gift to my readers. This year has been tough on all of us. I hope that this Holiday Season is a joyous time, spent with loved ones. For you to know of my love an appreciation for each and every one of you. And my hope, that a few months from now I’m gifting you playoff Suns basketball. I had a great time subbing for Santa and a big thank you to Brandon for allowing me this opportunity.
As I leave the arena, and into the moonlight. I exclaimed as I drove out of sight-
Happy Holidays to all, and to all a GREAT Suns season.
Editors Note: Everyone welcome Jordan aboard, he will be contributing Suns articles with both analysis and fun pop culture pieces as well. Give him a follow on twitter @J_Kartch!