NBA Preview: Suns seek shine in another year with no star
OCT 01, 2013 7:46p ET
Meet the Suns
Well, the Phoenix Suns played an entire season without Steve Nash and lived to tell about it. Not many people outside the organization noticed, but that’s really beside the point.
What matters is the Suns are marching on, trying to design some sort of plan following the breathtaking era of “Seven Seconds or Less.”
Now, they’ve hired a first-time head coach in Jeff Hornacek -- a one-time scrappy player who survived via pure guts and hustle. As the team is currently constructed, those are two great characteristics to try to pass along.
The Suns also made a nice trade over the summer, obtaining talented guard Eric Bledsoe from the Los Angeles Clippers. Bledsoe is strong, determined and capable of playing either guard spot. Considering what’s on the bench, he’ll probably have to do plenty of all those things.
And everyone else? It’s hard to tell.
Basically, the Suns are banking on many of the same things they did last season -- that someone on the brink of the NBA, or at least the brink of being a bona fide starter, will emerge out of nowhere.
Candidates include center Marcin Gortat, power forward Marcus Morris, point guard Goran Dragic and even rookie center Alex Len. The veterans listed there have talent, no doubt. But they’re fairly inconsistent and it’s still anyone’s guess if they can actually mesh.
So that’s basically the Suns in Year Two of the post-Nash era. They’re still trying to find their way, find a philosophy, find a guy to lead them to something beyond mediocrity.
Could be worse. Could be better, too.
Coach: Jeff Hornacek (first NBA season)
Last season: 25-57, did not make playoffs.
Projected starters: C Marcin Gortat; PF Marcus Morris; SF Gerald Green; SG Eric Bledsoe; PG Goran Dragic.
Key reserves: C Alex Len (r); SF P.J. Tucker; SG Shannon Brown; PF Markieff Morris; PG Kendall Marshall; SG Archie Goodwin (r); C Miles Plumlee.
New faces: Bledsoe, Green, Len, Goodwin, Plumlee, Hornacek, PG Ish Smith.
Outlook: Aside from Bledsoe, there doesn’t really seem to be a true consistent score. And while Bledsoe has been unleashed from playing behind Chris Paul in LA, he’s not exactly proven yet, either. With that in mind, the Suns will likely perform much like they did last season. They’ll be more focused on developing and another year in the NBA draft lottery.
FOX Sports: Suns home
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