How the Phoenix Suns could make the Playoffs after all

Deandre Ayton Joel Embiid Phoenix Suns (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Deandre Ayton Joel Embiid Phoenix Suns (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Phoenix Suns (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

As the NBA world and the real world is put on hold in favor of social distancing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, here is a proposal for how to finish this season once play resumes that could give the Phoenix Suns an opportunity to participate in their first NBA Playoffs since 2010.

As it currently stands, the Phoenix Suns are 26-39 and six games out of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference with 17 games remaining. Not exactly favorable odds to make their long awaited return to postseason basketball.

While this is definitely disappointing considering their 7-4 start to the season, a team that was on pace to win 33 games after winning 19 games the previous season should still be seen as a success and definite progress under the James Jones/Monty Williams regime.

But due to the unprecedented circumstances and uncertainty in regards to the continuation of the 2019-20 NBA season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, what if there was a one-time scenario in which the Phoenix Suns still had a realistic chance to play postseason basketball?

While I am clearly not a doctor or scientist, and as such, have zero insight into when, where and if the 2019-20 NBA season will resume and what that may look like, allow me to offer a fun proposal for the NBA to make the most out of this unique situation and potentially turn this into an opportunity to drive even more interest to the sport.

Spencer Dinwiddie has his. This is mine. I will say some of my inspiration for this idea came from Brian Windhorst’s piece from ESPN.

2020 NBA Playoffs Play-In Games: June 4-June 7 (Bahamas)

As Windhorst discussed, the NBA is considering essentially having all of their teams, coaching staffs, personnel, etc. in a bubble of sorts in an area less affected by COVID-19 in order to limit exposure for for all parties involved, including the teams and fans.

One of the three possible areas mentioned was the league overtaking a large ballroom space in the Bahamas that could enable them to host and broadcast games without fans.

While this was the only international destination listed, I think it would make the most sense as it would naturally be more isolated than any U.S. location such as a Las Vegas casino or a smaller university in the midwest.

Read. Contract-expiring players the Phoenix Suns should bring back. light

You could essentially sequester all league personnel in a stretch of hotels/resorts on the island and keep them separated from locals as a safety precaution. All teams have private jets and would never have to fly commercial to arrive in or leave the Bahamas as well.

Another reason while this feels like a more ideal option is the fact that according to, the Bahamas has 21 total cases of COVID-19 as of April 1.

In an NBA play-in scenario featuring all 30 teams, 28 of which would be involved in a one-game play-in game to see which 16 would make the NBA Playoffs.

Here are the match-ups:

(16) Orlando Magic
(17) Portland Trail Blazers

(9) Oklahoma City Thunder
(24) Chicago Bulls

(8) Miami Heat
(25) New York Knicks

(4) LA Clippers
(29) Cleveland Cavaliers

(13) Dallas Mavericks
(20) San Antonio Spurs

(12) Philadelphia 76ers
(21) Phoenix Suns

(5) Boston Celtics
(28) Minnesota Timberwolves

(15) Brooklyn Nets
(18) Pelicans

(10) Houston Rockets
(23) Charlotte Hornets

(7) Utah Jazz
(26) Detroit Pistons

(3) Toronto Raptors
(30) Golden State Warriors

(14) Memphis Grizzlies
(19) Sacramento Kings

(11) Indiana Pacers
(22) Washington Wizards

(6) Denver Nuggets
(27) Atlanta Hawks