What could happen to the Suns if they don't make the playoffs this year

Looking at what could happen if the Phoenix Suns fail to make the postseason.
Boston Celtics v Phoenix Suns
Boston Celtics v Phoenix Suns / Chris Coduto/GettyImages

The Phoenix Suns face a tough challenge in qualifying for the 2024 NBA Playoffs. They are currently in seventh place in the Western Conference, which makes them a Play-In team. However, being in the Play-In doesn't guarantee that they'll make it to the postseason, as two losses in the tournament could end their hopes of competing.

The Suns have a lot at stake this season. They were already hyped to be one of the title favorites before the 2023-24 season started. With Devin Booker, Kevin Durant, and Bradley Beal forming a Big 3, they are an elite offensive threat. But even with their star power, they have been inconsistent all season long, which explains their current position.

To form a new contending roster, the Suns traded Deandre Ayton and Chris Paul, among many others. They also replaced Monty Williams with Frank Vogel, who won the 2020 championship with the Los Angeles Lakers. Fans saw the potential the team had, but they have slightly underachieved.

With so many changes in such a short time, the players and staff were unable to form a solid chemistry together. It isn't their fault as the front office wants the organization to contend for a title while Booker is in his prime years.

Their season hasn't been all depressing, as they have had some notable wins this year. However, it's concerning to think that the Suns might miss out on the playoffs this season given the trend of inconsistencies they've displayed.

If the Suns don't make it to the postseason this year, there are a few scenarios that could play out. The scenario that stands out the most is that the front office could break up the current group. It sounds harsh, but it's a possibility. Considering that they were expected to be a top team in the West, the performance that Phoenix displayed in this year's campaign is underwhelming.

The Suns don't necessarily need to overhaul the entire roster, they just need to address the holes in their group. For instance, pursuing a full-time point guard to control the offense would be a good move. Their lack of a point guard was an issue that stood out even before the season started. Booker did well as the primary ball handler, but everyone knows that's not his role. A veteran point guard who can share the ball would be beneficial both in the starting lineup and on the bench.

Booker's All-Star support could benefit from a change. Both Durant and Beal have long-term contracts, making it challenging for the team to sign valuable role players. Additionally, both stars are prone to injuries, which could harm their chances of competing in the future. The Suns may want to consider retaining at least one of their stars to improve their prospects in the future.

The former Washington Wizards player is set to earn $50.2 million next season. Given his underwhelming performance this year, he may be traded while he still holds value. It's not entirely Beal's fault as his health hasn't been up to standard over the past few seasons. However, having an injury-prone star on the Suns' roster isn't the best idea, particularly for someone who's earning as much as the three-time All-Star.

A similar circumstance could be raised concerning Durant. Although he's demonstrated greater consistency than Beal despite his age. But it would be better if the Suns could keep KD while he's still at the top of his game.

There have been rumors that Beal should be traded in the offseason. As a third option for the Suns, an NBA insider has addressed him as "vastly overpaid." Booker is set to sign a supermax extension that could go to $159.9 million next season. However, the former University of Florida star will still earn more. Bleacher Report's Greg Swartz recently explained why the trade was a mistake.

""The trade for Bradley Beal was a questionable one at the time given the 30-year-old's contract. Injuries have limited the veteran guard to just 37 games this season, only confirming that this trade was a mistake.""

Greg Swartz

Next. 4 way too early free agency targets for the Suns this summer. 4 way too early free agency targets for the Suns this summer. dark

Trading Beal can be their key to acquiring a decent point guard for next season. But the hurdle the front office has to overcome in trading him is the fact that he has a no-trade clause in his contract. This means the trade proposal that they present to the star has to favor him as well.

If the Suns fail to make the postseason this year, they have a few problems they should address regarding the make-up of their roster. It also boils down to what they will do with Beal.