“We’re disappointed. We wanted a max contract,” Duffy said on SiriusXM Radio, via RealGM. “He went out and was a solider the whole year, played well, improved his statistics. So, we’re proud of him. A lot of guys handle things differently, but he was very mature about it.”
Ayton is a restricted free agent, and Duffy added he thinks Ayton will get a good contract this offseason — even if it’s not from the Suns.
“Things will work out for Deandre. He’s a valuable player,” Duffy said. “There’s other teams in the league as well. He’s a restricted free agent, so we’ll see how this process unfolds.”
“Deandre had an amazing season and he’s progressed every year and improved every year,” Jones told reporters. “He’s been here and so he’s a big part of what we do. His future with us is something we will address at the proper time which is in the future. He’s a free agent and I’ve said all along: he’s about the same things were about, which is winning. We’ll address it at the proper time.”
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski recently indicated that someone will offer Ayton a max contract this summer.
“Deandre Ayton did not feel valued by this Phoenix organization,” Wojnarowski said. “They were not able to come to an agreement on his rookie extension. He saw many of the top players in his class get extensions and he wanted a max deal, he would not move off that. So now he moves towards restricted free agency this summer where he’ll have some more options.”
Ayton, 23, averaged 17.2 points and 10.2 rebounds this season while shooting a career-high 63.4 percent from the field.
As Wojnarowski noted, Ayton was not happy with his contract situation entering the season. It ended prematurely in the Game 7 home loss to the Mavericks, in which Ayton played just 17 minutes and sat for most of the second half.