Problems Soon Over for The Phoenix Suns

03/27/2019

The Phoenix Suns have found themselves to be very unfortunate this year with things not looking bright for them in the win column this season. They have been dead last in the west after around the first couple weeks this season and haven't moved ever since. But I feel like they are closer to success after this season. Even closer than previous seasons where they were statistically better.

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I really see this as a fluke year for the Suns going from their usual seasons considered average at best, to this year where they have been straight up terrible. But the weird thing about this year is that they aren't even playing bad basketball, actually being much better over the course of the season. This is why I think they will be just fine come next season.

Management seems like the have a good idea of what they want and who they want on their team. I think they've made some pretty solid steps towards a well rounded core. Last NBA draft, the Suns picked Deandre Ayton first overall in the draft. Now the only reason why people may say he wasn't the right pick at number one is because of other rooks like Luka Doncic and Trae Young, but he is a great fit on the inside for the Suns. They picked the dude most appropriate for what the team needed. 

Due to other rookies shining over him, Ayton has silently been coming across a lot of personal accomplishments this season and proving to be quite dangerous sometimes. The big guy is averaging a double-double with 16.3 points per game and a team leading 10.2 rebounds per game. He also became the third youngest player in Suns history to score 1,000 career points. Centers are not often talked about around the league unless they are the best player on the team like Joel Embiid or a walking legend like Shaq was. So not only is Ayton overshadowed by others in his rookie class but the light of the team is already on his teammate Devin Booker. But Ayton knows where he stands for the Suns and he has proven to be very consistent at center. 

Devin Booker has been cold all season! The dude is leading his team in points per game with 26.1 and also leads in assists with 6.7, one thing is for sure, he is the most efficient key to the Suns when it comes to putting points on the board. He has accomplished so much this year so here are a few notables.

  • Most games in Suns history with 35+ points, 5+ rebounds, and 5+ assists
  • Most 35+ point games in a Suns season

  • Youngest in NBA history to record 500 three pointers

  • 5th youngest in NBA history to record 5000 career points

Devin Booker also became the very second Suns player to record multiple 50+ point games after his 59 point performance against the Jazz two days ago. This kid is for sure the face of the franchise right now. 

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They also have a third standout player with management pulling off quite the chess move in acquiring Kelly Oubre Jr through a trade with Washington. Oubre has been great for the Suns since then averaging a reliable 15.2 points per game and even sometimes helping Booker will the team to a win. 

Now this team shouldn't be considered bad or garbage or anything like that, this team is just undeveloped. They have the right players, they're all just very young. Ayton is 20 years old, Josh Jackson and Devin Booker is just 22, and Oubre is 23. Even some other notable team names are young like TJ Warren who is just 25. This team is definitely just really young and all they need is some time to develop. And with having a top pick in this years star studded draft this team is going to be great very soon.

They're honestly the best tanking team of this year with wins over great teams like the Bucks, Lakers, and Warriors! This team knows how to get it done, they just need to do so more often and they will be a force to reckon with. I believe they have the ability to steal a low seed in the playoffs next year and will be a scary playoff team for years to come after that. 

- Isaac Lingelbach