The Phoenix Suns have brought back NBA veteran Leandro Barbosa. Barbosa began his career with the Suns after being traded to Phoenix on draft night from the San Antonio Spurs.
His new deal with the Suns is over two years for $8 million deal. Barbosa’s best season with the Suns was in 2006, when he averaged 18.1 points and won the Sixth Man of the Year award.
Now that Barbosa has returned, most expected him to go back to his original #10, but he has chosen a different number. Barbosa is going to wear #19 to honor his former teammate, Raja Bell, whom he looked up to as a mentor.
"I picked No. 19 because of Raja. He was a real mentor to me when I was young." – @TheBlurBarbosa #BeepBeep pic.twitter.com/QB4FWUmI6s
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) July 19, 2016
Barbosa averaged 6.4 points while shooting 35.5% from behind the three-point line for the Golden State Warriors last year, helping them achieve a record 73 wins. Barbosa was also a part of the Warriors’ championship team the year before.
The “Brazilian Blur” will bring a veteran presence and try to help instill a championship culture in Phoenix. A team with as much young talent as the Suns, especially at the guard position, will benefit immensely from a good mentor like Barbosa. It shows a lot about his character for him to honor his former teammate by wearing his number.
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