The Phoenix Suns are still playing the long game, drafting for long-term potential two or three years down the road. No rookie is expected to play a big role on the 2015-16 Suns.
While every team will take the best player available, the definition of "best player available" (BPA) differs from team to team.
For the Phoenix Suns, the BPA is the player with the highest upside, per Suns GM Ryan McDonough today.
"What we don't want to do and will never do," McFreshTake said, "is just draft a guy who is older and maybe more ready over a guy we think is going to have a better career."
Case in point, two of the players who visited today were 23 year old Cleanthony Early and 19 year old Tyler Ennis. You might read into McStunna's quote that he would only take the youngest guys. And last year, he did take two of the draft's youngest players in 18 year old Archie Goodwin and 19 year old Alex Len.
But that's not exactly what he meant. McDonough was using the simplicity of age as a delineating factor for a simple crew (us) to follow.
If McD's team thinks Cleanthony Early (23) or Adreian Payne (23) has a higher ceiling than Tyler Ennis (19), then they will take the older player. The Suns just want the player with the brightest future.
"The draft is the best way to get guys who are going to be starters or stars," he continued. "And get them on a rookie contract, rather than just take the low hanging fruit and sign a guy who we think might help us win a few more games but has a lower ceiling."
McCandid tells it like it is, folks.
The Suns are not looking for a regular rotation player in 2014-15 from this rookie class. They are not going to draft a guy just because he fills an immediate need. Sure, if the guy can play right now that's a bonus. But it's not an expectation.
"It's possible," Hornacek said of the potential of a rotation player out of this draft. "But you know we have pretty good depth on our team. If nothing happens, I always assume we have the same team back. These guys will really, even the 14th pick, will have to battle to get any minutes."
Last year, rookies Alex Len and Archie Goodwin struggled to get playing time. Len's issue was health for most of the year, but Archie Goodwin could have played three games a day without getting winded. Yet, the Suns signed Leandro Barbosa off the street to take Archie's playing time when Hornacek wanted predictability from the backup two-guard spot.
With three picks, the Suns can do any number of different things. McDonough has talked about not wanting three rookies added to Archie Goodwin and Alex Len.
"The least likely thing is we keep all three of our first round picks," he said. "And draft three rookies and bring three rookies to the Suns next year. You guys know our team situation. We'd rather get fewer good players, or veterans or spread our picks out [by trading a first round pick for a future pick]."
But what if there's not a good scenario to trade out? What if the only players you're getting offered are long-term contracts or underachieving guys you don't like? What if all the other teams undervalue your own players too much to make a fair deal?
It's been a year now. McDonough had no affiliation to the old roster and traded away three of the top four players on the team for future assets without blinking an eye. We all lauded him for it.
His job this year is a lot tougher, whether he admits it or not. This year, he runs the risk of overvaluing his incumbent players. This year, he might get frustrated when other GMs doubt the abilities of Gerald Green or the Morris brothers after they had such good years.
The Suns could still just take all three picks and roll into July with a crowded roster. Remember the Suns had 17 players on guaranteed contracts as late as ONE WEEK before the first regular season game. Rookie head coach Jeff Hornacek was playing 14 guys a night all preseason.
It's better to draft the best players on the board than give away picks in bad deals.
But then again, we've got Ryan McMiracle at the helm.
A collection of all the rumors and speculations swirling around the web, including trades and free agent signings.
The finals are over and tis' the season for rumors. The Suns came out of the blue last year and nabbed Eric Bledsoe, Gerald Green, Miles Plumlee and multiple draft picks. Everyone is wondering what type of magic McDonough can conjure this offseason. This article will contain likely and unlikely scenarios. Let us begin.
LeBron James opts out of his contract in Miami and signs with the Suns. (Unlikely)
As good of fit as it seems, LeBron likely won't be playing in Phoenix next year expect for the opposing team. We won't know too much else on this topic till LeBron decides to opt out of his contract or not.
The Suns don't keep their three, first round picks. (Likely)
McDonough has stated in multiple interviews that the plan is not to draft three rookies. Expect some sort of trade involving picks to happen around draft day.
Kings send Isaiah Thomas and the 8th pick to the Suns for Eric Bledsoe (Next to Impossible)
This trade is not even possible. Both are RFAs, meaning their teams cannot trade them during the draft. And, because they are RFAs they each have the right to sign with any team, not the team they are told to sign with. So even if the Kings were dumb enough to draft "for the Suns" on June 26 with the hope this trade could happen, the players themselves are very likely to say "no thanks".
Also, Thomas (5'9") makes the Suns backcourt smaller than it already is and he doesn't have the defensive and rebounding mindset of Bledsoe. This trade only makes sense if the Suns are immediately flipping it into another deal.
The Suns Re-sign Eric Bledsoe to a max deal. (Likely)
Bledsoe showed star potential last year by averaging 17.7 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 5.5 apg, and 1.6 spg. The Suns have made their intetions known earlier in the season that they would match any offer Bledsoe received in free agency. The only way the Suns don't resign Bledsoe is if they see his injuries as too much of a risk. Bledsoe only played 43 games last season due to injury.
The Suns Trade for Kevin Love (Unlikely)
As much as I wish to see Love in a Suns jersey next season, it's not likely to happen. The Suns have good assets to trade for Love, a multitude of draft picks over the next few years and Bledsoe or Dragi?. But, Love has shown no interest in wanting to play in the desert. With the lack of a guarantee that Love will sign an extension it is hard seeing the Suns give away as much as Minnesota would ask for Love, for a one-year rental. On top of that, other teams such as Golden State have stated per sources at ESPN that they would be willing to give up Klay Thompson and David Lee to acquire Love.
The Suns re-sign P.J. Tucker (Uncertain)
The Suns have stated they want to re-sign Tucker quickly in free agency. But if a trade were to happen before free agency hits, the Suns may not be able to pay Tucker the money he deserves. There will also be plenty of other suiters for Tucker who will most likely pay more than the Suns are willing to for Tucker. Tucker is known to love PHX and wants to re-sign here. At this point, the idea of Tucker playing in a Suns uniform next season is still up in the air.
"It's like the best and worst situation," Tucker said. "I know I'm going to be in a better position business wise, but maybe I have to go to a team that's not so good. You never know. It's kind of scary, especially going through this for the first time so late in my career. They've talked to me and said they want to have me back. I think that's great, and I'm excited about seeing what happens." via AZCentral.com
Carmelo Anthony opts out (Very Likely) signs with the Suns (Unlikely)
Put simply, Chicago and Houston are Melo's top destinations at this point in time. But I guess anything is possible.
The Suns move up in the draft (Uncertain)
The Suns have assets to move up in the draft but it is hard to know when to move up or not. McDonough stated it best.
"How high we can get we probably won't know until right before the draft or after the draft starts and we're on the clock to see who starts coming off the board." McDonough also stated, "But we don't want to do it (trade up) just for the sake of doing it and give up an asset and say, 'Aw, shoot . . . that guy we moved up to get would have been there at 14 anyway,' and we could have kept the pick or the player or what have you." via msn.foxsports.com
Look for more Suns rumors and speculations throughout the offseason.
Do you wanna build a snowman? Wait, it is June in Arizona let's just stay inside and listen to some podcast. Yeah, that works.
It has been a minute, right? Here we are back in the saddle with a two-part Phoenix Suns Podcast touching on every aspect of basketball in the valley right now.
Part one features Nate Parham of Swish Appeal and Golden State of Mind to talk WNBA, Phoenix Mercury, 2014 All-Star Game (in Phoenix on July 19th), and much more. Nate always does a great job with his terrific knowledge of the league and the players. He is on the Mercury bandwagon.
Listen to Part One Here: Phoenix Suns Podcast Episode 57 w/Nate Parham
Next Jim Coughenour slides back into the co-pilot chair to talk Suns, NBA Draft, and of course, Kevin Love. Is it worth it to move up in the draft? Should the team keep all three picks? Who do the experts have the Suns taking now? Why does Kris hate the idea of trading for Kevin Love? Most of my venom was used off camera, but it might come out next week... Stand by.
Listen to Part Two Here: Phoenix Suns Podcast Episode 57 Part Two
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