Suns’ Deandre Ayton says he hasn’t spoken to coach Monty Williams from the bench in Game 7

Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton says he hasn’t spoken with head coach Monty Williams since being benched in a stunning Game 7 loss to the Boston Mavericks. Dallas in May.

Ayton had a tense summer with the Suns, signing a four-year, $133 million offer sheet with the Indiana Pacers before Phoenix matched using his restricted free agent rights.

“I haven’t spoken to him at all since the game,” Ayton told reporters after the first practice of the season on Tuesday. “I can show him better than I can tell him. That’s life. Nobody cares about the uncomfortable nature of it, it’s your performance and what you bring to the table. What is said is already said.”

Ayton worked at the Suns facility for weeks before training camp, but Williams said he deliberately decided to leave the players alone for a bit this summer to give them some space.

“I think 1-on-1s are still needed between the guys I’ve been with for a while,” Williams said. “Some guys need it and some don’t. I’ll identify that as the season progresses. I’ll talk to everyone like I always do during camp and it won’t be a problem at all. “

Ayton has been terse in his comments to the media about his feelings over the past two days on how contract talks have unfolded. He made it clear that he intended to take a professional approach to the season and didn’t have his more typical jovial attitude.

“When I’m between those lines, man, I’m working,” Ayton said. “I know I don’t play for myself. I have an organization on my chest and a name on my back that I have to represent, I’m just here to work.”

The Suns, seeded after winning 64 games last season, were eliminated by the Mavs in a 33-point home loss. Ayton only played 17 minutes in the match. At the time, when asked why, Williams only said it was an “internal” matter.

At a team dinner Monday night, Williams addressed the loss with the team.

“So much has been made of Game 7, but we tackled that last night as a team,” Williams said. “I put him to bed last night.”

On Monday, Williams said he believed Ayton could put all lingering issues behind him.

“He’s just too good a player, and he’s a good guy,” Williams said. “There are times when you bang your head over certain issues, but that doesn’t define a whole person. And I think sometimes those things are exaggerated and rightly so, when you don’t know all the facts. .”

Ayton averaged 17.2 points and 10.2 rebounds in 58 games last season.

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