Suns expecting more from Marquese Chriss

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Phoenix Suns forward Marquese Chriss pulls down a rebound against the Dallas Mavericks during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018, in Phoenix. The Suns defeated the Mavericks 102-88. (Source: AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin) Phoenix Suns forward Marquese Chriss pulls down a rebound against the Dallas Mavericks during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018, in Phoenix. The Suns defeated the Mavericks 102-88. (Source: AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Phoenix Suns second-year forward Marquese Chriss has displayed flashes of brilliance. He's an athletic specimen with tremendous potential.

The Suns are patiently waiting for the 20-year-old to take the next step. His tremendous upside comes with a learning curve averaging a mere seven points and five rebounds.

"I think I'm doing subpar right now. I'm disappointed the way I've been the last couple of months. Obviously, I feel I can play better and just trying to stay on the floor as much as possible and keep my body health is the biggest thing for me," says Chriss.

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"He has made strides. He's shown the potential where he can be, and other times it's been up and down and with a young player in the league, that's what you can expect," says Suns guard Devin Booker.

The skill is there. Chriss joined Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and Lebron James as the only players with 100 three-pointers, blocks and steals before the age of 21.

"So you know, he's in pretty good company. Obviously, we all have a long way to go. And I think he's going to work on his game to be better," says Booker.

The responsibilities and demands of being a professional Chriss has to figure out. He didn't do himself or the team any good by coming to fall camp out of shape.

"He wasn't in the shape he needed to be. And I think he's learned from that. And I think that put him behind a little bit," said Suns interim coach Jay Triano.

Drawing more negative attention, Chriss was suspended for Sunday's home game against Charlotte after a verbal confrontation with the team's strength coach following Friday's loss to the Jazz.

"That was their decision with what happened. I embrace it. I take responsibility for what I did and we are just trying to move on and keep the season going. Obviously, sitting at home at not being at help my brothers play in the game is painful and made me mad at myself," said Chriss.

"It's unfortunate but he's a young kid. He's going to learn. He's going to have a long career and he'll be better because of this experience," said Triano.

Putting the self-induced distraction behind them, where Chriss goes with his game is truly up to him.

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