Will we ever get over falling to fourth in the lottery?

Apr 7, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) reacts against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 7, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) reacts against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

Alright, Valley of the Suns fans, let’s talk this through.

They say that opening up about your feelings can help relieve the pain and stress from a traumatic event, and a full year of begging, pleading, believing  that the Suns would finally land a top three pick in the lottery only to be the only team to drop two spots, is something that will stick with us for a very long time.

I can honestly sum up my emotions from lottery day in a series of emojis (and did that very afternoon, sending the below emoji sequence to a friend moments after the lottery ended – something I have never done before).

😊 -> 🙂 ->  😐 ->  😑 ->  😯 ->  😟 ->  😞 ->  😣 ->  😫 =  🍺

For a full year, college evaluators have been telling us that there will be plenty of talent at the top of the draft, that even beyond the second and third pick teams will find a player capable of making an impact on the roster, several worthy of being pieces to be built around.

Many fans are hoping that the Suns go with a Kentucky guard again, this time selecting De’Aaron Fox, a defensive-minded point guard who would allow Devin Booker to be the main scorer in the backcourt.

Duke’s Jayson Tatum has been called the fourth star in this draft and appears to be the best value pick at Phoenix’s draft position, especially with some calculating that he is actually the second best player in the draft.

Johnathan Issacs could be a center of the future, a flexible big who within only a year or two would step in as Phoenix’s long term answer, hopefully anchoring a position that the franchise has never had the opportunity to build around.

And yet, we’re still disappointed. The Suns put fans through a year of losing, with the promise of a high draft pick and the guarantee of selecting one of the most talented players to come out of a draft since the highly-touted 2003, LeBron James, Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, Carmelo Anthony, Darko Milicic draft.

We knew that Markelle Fultz, Lonzo Ball, and Josh Jackson were all can’t misses. That any one of those three could help the franchise flip it’s fortunes very quickly, and that pairing any of them with Devin Booker could be the beginning of a combo that would allow “Phoenix Suns” to be written in ink as a playoff team for a decade, once again.

It just was not meant to be.

Will the Suns ever  catch a break? Will the NBA (or fate) allow them to take a very high pick and turn him into a face-of-the-franchise superstar worthy of endorsements, commercials, and even shoe deals (legitimate ones, not insane ones)? Will the Suns ever win a title, but more impressively, win a series of titles, dominating the Western Conference, if not even the league for several years in a row?

Possibly. Hopefully. But that’s not going to dictate our support of the state’s oldest professional sports franchise.

Us fans are loyal to the bone. We eat, breathe, and sleep the Suns. We know the full roster of the two NBA Finals teams – as well as many of our other favorite teams in history. We know each and every moment the team has been screwed – whether it be by a ref, by an opponent, or by the league itself – and we hold grudges against said perpetrators of our aggrivation.

It doesn’t matter that they missed out on a chance to draft Steph Curry. Or that Isaiah Thomas was unfortunately traded for very little in return. Or that Mike D’Antoni is back to leading the fastest, most exciting team in the league, and probably should have never been allowed to leave Phoenix. In the end, knowing all of that will only make our fandom stronger.

We are sick of the losing, but we’ll never allow those moments of failure to pull us from our lifelong love of our team.

Finishing in fourth in the draft lottery might bring us down, but it will not hold  us down. The Suns are beginning to rise and soon will shine brightly once more in the NBA sky. Winning the lottery would have been the easy way to that peak, but history has shown that it would not have been the Suns  way.

It would not have been our  way.

Even with the fourth pick, the Suns will land a good player. Hopefully Ryan McDonough can also make a splashy trade or free agency signing this offseason to supplement that pick and really set the move in motion. They will continue to build and this team will grow right before our eyes, soon to exceed even our wildest expectations.

When that happens – and it will – we will look back upon the 2017 draft lottery and remember the sting that we still feel at this moment. But, that future success will only heighten the positive emotion of the moment, and be the last step in the healing process of this most recent loss.