ESPN: Phoenix Suns in bottom half of NBA for young talent
Though the team has failed to reach the postseason in each of the last three years, it did not truly start looking to build around youth until about a year ago.
So, it stands to reason they are still somewhat lacking in the "young players to build around" department, which is why they are ranked 18th by ESPN.com's Amin Elhassan in terms of under-25 talent.
Players: Michael Beasley (24), Eric Bledsoe (23), Archie Goodwin (18), Malcolm Lee (23), Alex Len (20), Kendall Marshall (21), Markieff Morris (23), Marcus Morris (23), Miles Plumlee (24)
Acquiring Bledsoe greatly boosted Phoenix's youth corps, who until that point were a roster of bench contributors. He brings elite athleticism at the point guard position, although now he'll have to adjust to playing more minutes without necessarily playing more minutes at point guard (he'll share those duties with incumbent Goran Dragic). The Morris twins both have the potential to be productive players, albeit at the same position: power forward (I'm not sold on Marcus as a full-time 3). Marshall is fighting for his NBA life at this stage, and it doesn't help that the Suns are well stocked at point guard. In terms of draft talent, Len has the potential to be a skilled big on the block who can pop out for the jumper, but the real gem was Goodwin, an athletic freak who, at 18, was one of the youngest players in the draft.
Indeed, the brightest young stars on the roster would appear to be Bledsoe and Goodwin, though they are both unproven talents. Len has potential, but has to recover from a pair of ankle surgeries before he can take the court for the Suns.
After them, Beasley is expected to be removed from the team soon, the Morris twins have yet to show much, and the rest are pegged to be role players, at best.
Adam Green, Web Content Editor - ArizonaSports.com
- 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'
- Phoenix Suns' Goran Dragic named NBA's Most Improved Player
- 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.