There is a lot of intrigue surrounding new Phoenix Suns head coach Igor Kokoskov, who moved from Utah to Phoenix to take over a club with a lengthy history of innovative and successful offensive coaches, from Paul Westphal in the early 1990s to Mike D’Antoni in the mid-2000s. Kokoskov brings European influence to the Suns, one built around teamwork and a philosophy of passing up a good shot for a great one that has held quite a few great coaches in good stead over the years.
The Suns’ offense has lacked a certain amount of creativity in recent seasons. Kokoskov has already changed that in a big way through the first few games of his tenure on the bench, as the new-look Phoenix attack has been far more democratically than the 2017-18 version.
It’s still early in the season, but the Suns are averaging the second-most passes per game (through October 23) after passing the ball better than just eight teams last year. It helps to have personnel on the perimeter who can hit shots to whom the Suns’ playmakers can pass the ball, but there’s no doubt that Kokoskov’s values offensively are permeating the team on the floor.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at a particular set play Phoenix ran against the Dallas Mavericks in each team’s opening game last week. It’s a set I’m calling “STS Hammer,” and it gives the Suns a few different options throughout.