The Suns Worst Nightmare Will Remain the Warriors


The Phoenix Suns lucked out this season. They have to play the NBA “Super Team,” the Golden State Warriors four times. But will these games actually be competitive?

The quick answer is no. However, if you dig into these matchups, the Suns may have one of the better opportunities to challenge this “Super Team.”

73-10 is a record that clearly doesn’t leave much room for other teams to win. What the Warriors showed us last season, is that they can win. They will win. And they will win big. That’ll be different this season, though.

The Suns aren’t going to win an NBA Finals, or compete in the Western Conference. What they will do is improve drastically from last season. Drafting promising young talent, developing players like Devin Booker and T.J. Warren, and bringing in a new head coach who seems to know exactly how to control this team.

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The Suns have done nothing except improve this offseason, and it will show. Don’t get me wrong. No team improved like the Warriors did, but that doesn’t mean they’ll play as well.

What the Suns did was grow a unit. What the Warriors did was attempt to grab every big name under the sun. Kevin Durant was the signing of the summer, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s going to improve Golden State. He is another offensive threat on a team full of offensive threats. It could turn the Warriors into the greatest shooting team in NBA history, or it could destroy their chemistry.

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Breaking down each matchup, Eric Bledsoe versus Stephen Curry will be a highlight reel game. Bledsoe is one of the best defending point guards in the NBA when healthy, and Curry is one of the greatest scorers in the history of the league. Putting these two on the court against each other will be one of the best competitions of 2017.

Brandon Knight and Devin Booker will be posed to play Klay Thompson. If these three don’t excite you, then you shouldn’t watch basketball.

Any of them can put up a 30 point night at any time. If Thompson doesn’t get the Kevin Love effect in Golden State, he showed to be as good, if not better, than last season. Playing an improved Booker and a healthy Knight should be one of the highest scoring face-offs of the season.

As much as I’d like to say T.J. Warren or P.J. Tucker can defend Kevin Durant, I can’t. He’s head over heels ahead of these two and will prove it. However, Marquese Chriss may get his shot to matchup against Durant. If he does, look for some serious intensity out of Chriss as he tries to show this superstar who he is.

The post game is hit or miss. One night Alex Len or Tyson Chandler can put up 20 points and 15 rebounds, and another they may be as irrelevant as any Denver Broncos’ quarterback in 2015.

Dragan Bender hasn’t shown enough to really determine his impact yet. As of Summer League, he shouldn’t be looking to contribute much. But that can change overnight.

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Against Draymond Green, the Suns don’t seem to have anyone who can shut him down defensively. Chriss may be able to match his physicality, but he won’t be able to keep him off the boards.

When it comes to Jared Dudley, to keep it short, sit him. There isn’t any chance he will be able to face off against Green and produce anything. He doesn’t play well enough defensively, and isn’t strong enough inside to produce anything. He’s a waste of floor space against the Warriors.

So, the Suns seem to have a good chunk of the backcourt figured out, but not the front. They’ll need to rely heavily on Booker, Bledsoe, and Knight to produce enough to compete with this team.

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It’s hard to say if they will actually put up a fight against the Warriors in 2016-2017. Honestly, it doesn’t look very promising. But if their key players, and maybe some rookies, pull off big nights, they may be looking at one of the more major upsets of the season.

It doesn’t look good. But this is the NBA. Anything can happen.