Although they have clinched the worst record in the league with a loss to the Golden State Warriors, the Phoenix Suns (20-61) are in a phenomenal position to be very good within the next couple of years. So good that im calling it right now that they will be the 2023 NBA Champions. “But Keelan the Suns are a dumpster fire of a franchise, how in the world could they pull that off?” I’ll tell you, you idiots. First of all, Devin Booker is a superstar in the making, and him in his prime at 26 when 2023 rolls around could easily be an MVP candidate with his scoring prowess.
In addition to already having Booker and a solid young core, the Suns had the league’s worst record. And with those regular season woes comes the best chance for the #1 pick in the draft, with which the Suns can draft Arizona center DeAndre Ayton, who looks like Karl Anthony-Towns and Demarcus Cousins had a baby who violated NCAA violations.
Despite the two of them being sub-par defenders, they would be a dynamic offense to watch, reminiscent of the 6 Seconds to Score Suns under Mike D’antoni during the mid 2000’s, and at 6’11 Ayton could be coached up on defense and with the help of Tyson Chandler as a mentor. Not to mention 2017 4th overall pick Josh Jackson, a good defender as is.
The point guard position is still a question mark, but they could take a chance on former lottery pick Elfrid Payton this offseason, whom the team traded a 2nd round pick for back in February, based off his defense and distribution skills. But if they don’t like the former Magic guard as their point guard of the future, the Suns also have the 16th pick in this years draft from the Heat. They could easily package that pick with a future pick to move back into the top 10 to select a top PG in the draft like Collin Sexton or Trae Young, preferably Sexton for his aggressive scoring instincts and defensive upside, although he isn’t much of a passer (3.6 assists per 36 minutes). Or, if the boys from Phoenix aren’t willing to part with those selections, they could elect to roll with Payton as their starting PG, and get depth with that mid round pick. With wings like Mikal Bridges, Zhaire Smith, Kevin Knox, and Troy Brown likely to be available in the middle of the first.
This draft is crucial for the Suns to live up to my expectations, but with a few good picks, they can build a young core that can develop together and take over in their division as the Warriors Big 4 slowly prices themselves out of Golden State after they win another ring for themselves. And aside from all those things, the Suns have quality young depth in TJ Warren, Marquiss Chris, Dragan Bender, among others.
The Suns, through their losing ways, have positioned themselves to become a force to be reckoned with in the near future. If all goes well, the Suns will be a perennial contender for years to come.