Leandro Barbosa will continue to do his best “Road Runner” impression for the Phoenix Suns, as he’s been inked to another 10-day contract, per a Suns press release sent out this morning. Not only is it a good move for the Suns, it’s a good move for Barbosa on a couple of different levels. Not only can he make more of an impression on other teams, but he can also have an opportunity to be signed for the rest of the season in Phoenix.
Barbosa hasn’t been with the Suns long (this time around), but in the four games he has appeared, he’s averaging 9.3 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 21.5 minutes per game. His signature performance thus far came in the last game of the Suns five-game road trip in January, when he scored 21 points (14 in the fourth quarter) at Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks.
There’s no question that Barbosa can still contribute in small doses to an NBA squad. With that said, the only reason the Suns gave him a look in the first place was because of the extended time that Eric Bledsoe was to miss and the ineffectiveness of Archie Goodwin.
Per league rules, teams cannot sign a player to a third 10-day contract. They must either be signed for the rest of the season or released. You’d think the Suns would wait until the last possible second to see how Bledsoe’s rehab is coming along before making that decision, otherwise they’d have to release someone to make space for Barbosa.
The best-case scenario is Barbosa lights it up over the next 10 days and forces the Suns to keep him on the rest of the year. They really need help in the backcourt off the bench and he’d get all the opportunity in the world to revisit the days of his Sixth Man of the Year 2006-07 days.
Michael Dunlap covers Arizona sports (Suns, Diamondbacks, Coyotes, Cardinals) at Big4Sports.com. He is an NBA credentialed writer who is also the Founder and Editor-in-Chief for the Sports Illustrated/Fansided NBA site HoopsHabit.com. He also covers high school sports for The Arizona Republic. Follow me on Twitter @DunlapNBA.