The 2012-13 abomination in Suns history ended Wednesday night with the same mix that got Phoenix to such historic lows in the first place.
There was the lack of star power when the game mattered, followed by encouraging numbers by young players and bench warmers in meaningless minutes.
There was the Suns’ new offensive identity: ugly. Phoenix shot just 38 percent on a whopping 104 shot attempts, including 7-of-25 from 3-point range.
Finally, there was the latest development: intentional and undeniable tanking. Kendall Marshall played 41 minutes in place of Goran Dragic, who received another late-season DNP-CD.
The entire formula was the 82nd and last disgusting dose for a Suns fan base that, after four playoff-less seasons over the last five years, may unwillingly be getting used to losing. Even worse, the Suns won’t get an added bonus in the lottery thanks to Utah’s fantastic no-show in a do-or-die-for-the-playoffs loss at Memphis. Due to that game, the Lakers will make the playoffs, robbing Phoenix of an extra lottery pick from the Steve Nash trade.
That leaves the Suns with their own pick (potentially top 3), at least one late first-round pick, and a medium-sized amount of cap space with which to right the ship during the offseason.
Much of that cap space, however, could be affected by players Phoenix deems desirable to keep. Will Wesley Johnson (12 points on 5-of-11 shooting vs. Denver) be brought back? What will happen to Shannon Brown after falling out of the rotation? Will other players be dealt on or after draft day before their contracts expire a year from now (see: Marcin Gortat)?
Whatever happens, it’s doubtful things can get any worse than Wednesday’s game — or the 2012-13 season.