The Phoenix Suns are keeping center Alex Len for at least one more year. Shams Charania of The Vertical reported that Len signed a qualifying offer to stay in Phoenix for the 2017-18 season. He is going to earn $4.2 million and will become an unrestricted free agent next year.

Len can use the new season to prove his worth to the Suns and increase his value in the NBA. When he came into the league as the fifth overall pick in the 2013 draft, many saw him as a prospect with tremendous potential. Sadly, in four seasons, the 24-year-old Ukrainian is yet to impress.

Len has career averages of just 6.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks.

Special opportunity

In the Suns' new campaign, Len will likely have the same role he had in the past four seasons. He is set to be one of Tyson Chandler's backups. However, in the upcoming training camp and preseason, he has an opportunity to take the second-stringer role. That job was expected to go to Alan Williams. Unfortunately, the 21-year-old is out for some time. Williams recently suffered a partially torn meniscus when he accidentally stepped on a teammate's foot during a workout.

Williams' injury is a setback for Phoenix, but it could turn out beneficial to Len. With Williams on the sidelines, Len has a good chance of being named Chandler's top backup.

The role would help him better his numbers since it means more playing time. It can also improve his stock in the NBA, which may come handy when he enters free agency next year. As of the moment, the only man that stands in his way is Anthony Bennett, who the Suns signed to a non-guaranteed contract a few days ago.

Not much difference

Len's signing might be the last move for the Suns ahead of this year's training camp. Looking at their roster, nothing much has changed. They are retaining almost the same group of players from the previous season when they finished last in the West. Notable new faces in Phoenix aside from Bennett are Josh Jackson and Troy Daniels.

Jackson was the team's fourth overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. Daniels, on the other hand, was a trade acquisition from the Memphis Grizzlies.

The Suns have a few more NBA newcomers besides Jackson like Mike James, Alec Peters, and Peter Jok. Though there is a possibility that none of them will be in Phoenix by the time the season starts. Either they will get released or be assigned to the Suns' NBA G League affiliate, the Northern Arizona Suns.