The Phoenix Suns have had plenty of losses this season, but they’ve also had plenty of bright spots. It could be the best of both worlds.
The Phoenix Suns have been bad. It’s very often been hard to watch, especially when the team is consistently unable to keep games within ten points. But through all of the losses and the NBA’s worst record (again), the Suns have actually given us many reasons to be optimistic. By many measures, this season is ideal.
The play on the court obviously leaves a lot of reasons to be concerned. Deandre Ayton looks passive and can’t defend. Josh Jackson hasn’t looked good at all. Devin Booker has struggled to stay healthy, and it’s taken a toll on his shooting. All that is true. But losing big this season isn’t a bad outcome for the Suns.
Even with flattened lottery odds, it helps to have a better shot at number one and a lower floor for where you will select. And with a potentially franchise altering player in Zion Williamson projected to go number one this summer, the Suns should do their best to be in a position to land the top pick, no matter how low the odds may be.
The Suns also have to consider this season a success for their future core. Not everyone has lived up to expectations, but the team still has some players to be excited about. By far the most exciting thing to happen this season is the Suns finding a lineup that works. Devin Booker, Mikal Bridges, T.J. Warren, and Deandre Ayton have clicked really well together, despite the team’s struggles overall.
Going forward, the Suns will look to draft a forward and acquire a point guard. They’ll almost certainly be among the four teams with the best odds for Williamson, and they’ll have the cap space and assets to get a point guard they’re comfortable with, allowing them to shift Devin Booker back into his natural position at the two.
Next season, the Suns might trot out a lineup actually capable of .500 play with plenty of room to grow. Unfortunately, this team isn’t that good like many had guessed it might be. But another year to develop players, a healthy Devin Booker, a top college player, and a starting-caliber point guard could take the Suns’ best group and turn them into a well rounded team.