ESPN Insider gives Phoenix Suns positive offseason mark
For the first time in a long time, there is optimism about the direction of the franchise, thanks to what new general manager Ryan McDonough and new head coach Jeff Hornacek have done since being elevated to their positions.
And the optimism isn't limited to the confines of the Phoenix metro area; national pundits are taking notice, too.
ESPN's Chad Ford, in an Insider piece, rated the Suns' offseason positively, giving the organization a 'B' grade, mostly for their acquisition of guard Eric Bledsoe from the Los Angeles Clippers and the drafting of center Alex Len and guard Archie Goodwin.
Landing Bledsoe for the price of Dudley and a second-round pick may have been the steal of the summer. Reasonable minds can disagree about Bledsoe's future, but he's a 23-year-old young point guard who excelled while playing significant minutes on a playoff team. For a rebuilding one like the Suns, that's pure gold.
They also landed what they believe to be their center of the future in Len, who is huge, athletic and quite skilled for a player his age but is coming off surgery for a stress fracture in his ankle. I like Len, but the Suns should've taken Nerlens Noel ahead of him. Noel, to me, has more upside, and I worry a bit about Len's toughness.
Goodwin, the second youngest player in the draft, struggled in his freshman season at Kentucky. But he's blessed with great speed and athleticism, and if he ever develops a jump shot, he could be a lethal scorer. He looked quite impressive at summer league, and if the Suns are patient, they could have their backcourt of the future in Bledsoe and Goodwin.
While Ford is brimming with positives, he does end his write-up by admitting the Suns will struggle again in 2013-14 -- maybe enough to be the worst team in the Western Conference for the second straight season.
But that would be fine with most around the organization, especially considering the 2014 NBA Draft is loaded with potential superstar players.
Vince Marotta, Co-host - Bickley & Marotta, Web Content Editor - ArizonaSports.com
- Phoenix Suns' Channing Frye finishes third in NBA Sportsmanship Award voting
- Suns' Hornacek on Len, Goodwin: 'We couldn't just throw them out there and hope for the best'
- The Pulse: NBA Playoffs will have your attention over summer
- Suns guard Goran Dragic: 'Consistency' was vital in winning Most Improved Player award
- Phoenix Suns' Goran Dragic: 'I'm going to try to get better every year'
- Goran Dragic, Suns guard - Wednesday April 23Suns guard Goran Dragic talks about winning the Most Improved Player of the Year Award.
- Tim Kempton, Suns analyst - Wednesday April 23Tim Kempton defends his vote for Defensive Player of the Year.
- Tim Kempton, Suns analyst - Tuesday April 22Suns radio analyst Tim Kempton calls in to react to the blast.
- Bickley Blast - Tuesday April 22Bickley blasts on postseason awards and how making it in the playoffs makes a huge difference
- Eddie Johnson, Suns analyst - Monday April 21Suns analyst Eddie Johnson talks about the NBA playoffs.