Here you go, Channing Frye. This is the make it or break it contract. Frye is 26-years-old and for the first time in his career will have oodles and oodles of playing time if he can keep it in Phoenix. Sure, he showed flashes with the Knicks and the occasional one with the Blazers, but this is his time. At this age, with this amount of opportunity, and with this point guard feeding him the ball, there just isn’t a better time. Many capable professional athletes spend much of their careers sitting on the bench behind established players. It’s true in all sports: a player needs playing time to get better and show what he’s worth. This is Frye’s time to shine… if he can. Frye joined XTRA 910 in Phoenix to discuss what it feels like to be going home in a sense, another similar scenario which occurred with the Suns, and why he chose Phoenix.
How do you feel coming back to the state where you played university ball?
“I’m just a kid in a candy story right now. I definitely just think it’s a great opportunity for me to come here; I’m gonna let this settle in for a couple more days and then it’s time to get to, then really just breaking it down and see how I can make this team a playoff team.”
Did you get a lot of phone calls from all your old friends?
“Everybody. Everybody I know. There was literally I think four or five people in my phone book that didn’t call me.”
Steve Nash thinks this statement is true, Channing Frye is ready to blow up. Do you?
“I definitely think so. You look at guys, in case point being Boris Diaw. I think he was in Atlanta, they didn’t really know what to do with him – it wasn’t really their system and they had other guys there that they had invested in. You know, we didn’t know really need him so we’ll put him in this situation, we’ll just put him in this role. Here, I think they need what I do. It’s gonna be a great opportunity for me; I cannot be more excited. I think right now I’m 26, I’ve been through it all, man. I just understand what it takes to win and no matter even if I got the minutes or not, someone was like, ‘Hey, Channing, we need you out here to help us win,’ I’ve come through the best of my ability and I’ve done the best that I can.”
You had other options besides Phoenix. What was the deciding factor in signing with the Suns?
“It was definitely the opportunity, the opportunity to play. I just had to look like, okay, in Portland, I think the biggest thing for them was you always need to be ready, you never know when someone’s gonna get hurt. And, I think in the other teams it came down to that too. I think those other teams have three established players who are pretty good – and mind you I do things differently than them – it still comes down to, if I have to decide, my playing time was decided on them and their injuries. I wanna go somewhere where they’re like, ‘Look, Channing, we’re gonna play you until you get injured.’ You know what I’m saying? And, that’s what I need. I just need to go somewhere where somebody believes in me, understands what I do, and playing with Steve Nash doesn’t hurt.”