The Phoenix Suns want to win, and want to win now. The team is looking to acquire an impact player this season to propel them to the next level, and is willing to give up one or more draft picks to do so.
As Scott Howard-Cooper points out, the Suns are exceeding expectations thus far into the season and are 13-9, currently riding a four-game win streak.
Players such as Eric Bledsoe and Miles Plumlee have improved tremendously from just one season ago. Both are averaging career highs in points, rebounds, assists, steals and field goal percentage. Bledsoe, the 24-year-old guard is putting up near All-Star-like numbers (19.2/6.3/3.4 on 49.3 percent shooting) and is showing signs of becoming one of the next great players in the league.
Despite the talent that will be heading into June’s draft, the Suns might have four first-round picks and are willing to exchange a couple of them for a player who would, once again, make Phoenix a playoff regular.
“I think one of the things that’s important for people to realize is that we may not draft four players even if we have four picks,” Suns general manager Ryan McDonough told NBA.com. “Our preference would probably be to maybe package a few of them. We’re obviously all looking for stars and we feel like we can put together a package as good, if not better, than any other team in the league if and when a star becomes available. That’s kind of generally what we’ve wanted to do, not only with our draft-pick situation but also with the cap space that we’ve acquired.”
Not only do the Suns have their own 2014 first-round pick, but have the possibilities to gain up to three more. The Minnesota Timberwolves owe them a first-round pick that is protected up to the first 13 selections, the Washington Wizards will be forced to give up a top-12-protected first-rounder and the Indiana Pacers must hand over their lottery-protected first-round pick as well.
The news gets even better for Phoenix. In 2015, the Los Angeles Lakers will surrender their first-round pick to the Suns, as long as it is not a top-five pick.
It is certainly nice to have multiple picks in drafts and have the ability to select players that will hopefully help the franchise, but the possibility to pair Bledsoe up with an already proven star just might be too good of an opportunity for the Suns to pass up.