NBA fans will soon see David Fizdale on the bench again, starting in the 2023-24 season after the Phoenix Suns decided to hire the former Memphis Grizzlies and New York Knicks mentor to help the new head coach, Frank Vogel, run the team.
Vogel spoke highly of Fizdale when he shared his thoughts on why the Suns are bringing him in.
“I think the first thing with coach Fiz is the game has changed and continued to change so much over the last five, seven, 10 years with the new style of play. Everyone talks about the modern NBA. So to have Fiz on my staff and in the trenches with me in LA, when we were trying to utilize an continue to grow and evolve the system that we use – which, by the way, is a completely different system than we used back as early as seven, eight or nine years ago in Indiana,” said Vogel about the Suns adding Fizdale to the team's coaching staff (via Trevor Booth of ClutchPoints).
Vogel also further noted Fizdale's adaptability to trends in the NBA and lengthy experience as a coach as among the qualities that make him a perfect addition to the Suns.
“The evolution has been necessary. And I love the way we changed to the scheme and system to come into LA and win a championship in year one. But the league continues to change even more since then. So I think that immediate corporate knowledge is something that really draws or makes Fizdale attractive to me. I got great chemistry with him too. We work our asses of, but we have a lot of fun in the process. And I just really, really respect his pedigree, championship pedigree as an assistant coach. And the fact that he’s been a head coach in this league is really comforting, to have somebody like that on your staff that has been through all the decisions that go into managing this position.”
Before he had his head coaching stints with the Grizzlies and the Knicks, Fizdale was a long-time assistant with the Miami Heat from 2003 to 2016. That experience should serve him well in helping Vogel figure out how to get the Suns to the top of the league.