With training camp just around the corner, the players are gearing up for the season. The Suns won’t be very good and potentially could be the worst team in the league. Each player is in a different stage of his career. They each have different expectations attached to them.
And I’m gonna break it all down for you.
Dragic has been the best player for Phoenix since Nash was shipped off to L.A. for a bunch of draft picks. This has not gone well for the Suns as they haven’t made the playoffs since 2010 when they made the Conference Finals. Currently, he’s not capable of being the best player on a playoff team.
Since getting his chance to start in Houston due to an injury to Kyle Lowry, the 27-year-old has improved year after year, but after five years in the league, there is a ceiling to this kind of improvement.
Best Case Scenario: Dragic somehow exceeds expectations, and with potential point guard injuries in the Western Conference, could make the All-Star team as a reserve.
Worst-case Scenario: He doesn’t play well enough to continue starting and gets benched. In this scenario, Bledsoe moves over to starting PG and Goodwin or probably Brown starts at SG.
What’s at Stake: If Dragic can’t show he is a top-three player on a playoff team he could be traded. The franchise no longer has as much of an attachment to him, because new GM Ryan McDonough and had coach Jeff Hornacek weren’t with the team when Dragic was drafted. They weren’t there when he came back from Houston either.
Possible Statistical Averages: PPG: 15.5 (+0.8), APG: 6.5 (-0.9), RPG: 3.0 (-0.1)
Dragic can increase his scoring output a bit, but with the athletic Bledsoe starting next to him and dominating the ball more, Dragic’s assists will go down and his random three long rebounds per game will stay about constant.
Dragic can slightly increase his averages, and probably would be the third option on a playoff team, behind the 2014 draft pick and Eric Bledsoe (if he can reach his potential).