Deandre Ayton Shockingly Subdued At Gloomy Suns Media Day

It's understandable that things were a bit low-key at the Phoenix Suns' Media Day, what with the whole Robert Sarver saga hanging over them. But to watch Deandre Ayton carry himself, you'd hardly believe that this is a guy the Suns just gave a 4-year, $133M contract to. 

“I was happy. It was all done, I guess,” was all Ayton could say. He refused to elaborate any further. As noted by ESPN's Brian Windhorst, this hardly looked like "the usually jovial" center. One onlooker said Ayton looked like "a depressed hostage":

Suns beat writer Gerald Bourguet says it was "striking" how down Ayton looked.

With Ayton being a restricted free agent, the Suns waited until the Indiana Pacers came in with an offer sheet to Ayton later in the summer before matching it. 

It was well known that he was unhappy and felt disrespected by the Suns for not giving him the max rookie extension in the 2021 offseason, and then not dropping it on him when free agency first opened this year. Is he harboring resentment towards the team? Upset about the Sarver situation? Or simply just displaying a new mature, focus?

Overall, the mood at Media Day "revealed a team still in shock," writes  Windhorst. And as for Ayton and his year-long battle to get a contract from the Suns? "There seemed to be some scars."

Photo: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports