Phoenix picks up Iowa's Matt Gatens

Published: June 29 2012 | 6:21 am - Updated: 31 March 2014 | 9:04 pm in
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IOWA CITY — Matt Gatens took two pre-draft visits to Phoenix for a reason this spring.

Gatens, a 6-foot-5 guard from Iowa City, was signed to the Suns' summer-league squad after Thursday's draft, the former Iowa guard announced on Twitter early Friday morning.

"Looking forward to pursuing my career with the Phoenix Suns summer league squad!" Gatens tweeted.

Former NBA star Dan Majerle will coach the Suns' summer-league squad, which begins play July 15 against the New York Knicks' summer-league team. All games are televised by NBATV and are played in Las Vegas.

Gatens took eight visits to seven NBA teams this spring and early summer. His second visit to Phoenix was on Monday. The Suns had only a first-round pick and drafted North Carolina point guard Kendall Marshall with the first pick.

Gatens was a second-team all-Big Ten selection last year after averaging 15.2 points, including 17 in Big Ten play. He ranks sixth in scoring all-time at Iowa with 1,635 points and is the first Hawkeye to lead the team in free-throw shooting all four years.

In February, Gatens put up one of the best stretches in recent Big Ten history. He scored 30 points against Indiana and 33 against Wisconsin, the first time since at least 1997 that a player scored 30-plus back-to-back against ranked Big Ten opponents. He hit a school-record 12 straight 3-pointers during those games and was the first Hawkeye to score 85 or more points in three combined games since Roy Marble in 1989.

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