Phoenix Suns are ready to compete with best in the West

The Phoenix Suns were projected to be one of the worst teams in the NBA before the season started. Now, they have a record above .500 and are in prime position for a playoff spot.

modrich_dishjan29The team had a horrendous 2012-13 season, finishing last in the Western Conference with a record of 25-57, second worst in franchise history. Owner Robert Sarver was supposed to be on his way out, accused of running the organization into the ground.

Few thought that this team, led by Slovenian slash-and-kick guard Goran Dragic, would turn a last place team to a playoff contender in the ultra-competitive Western Conference. But here we are, just weeks from the All-Star Game, and the Suns are clinging to the seventh seed.

It’s been a streaky first half for Phoenix, no doubt. There have been victories against Portland and Indiana, two of the NBA’s elite teams, as well as wins over both LA teams, Houston and Golden State.

 

 

But there have also seen some hiccups against bottom-tier teams like Detroit, Washington, Sacramento and Utah. It’s this streakiness and unpredictability that has made them so much fun to watch.

Dragic is a pick-and-roll wizard and has developed a nice shooting stroke, all the while being the main distributor on offense, feeding swingmen Channing Frye and Gerald Green. Miles Plumlee has thrown down some vicious dunks since coming over in the Indiana trade. P.J. Tucker is a bruiser down low and is a defensive stalwart.

Say what you want about Sarver, the Phoenix Suns are ready to compete with the best in the West.

 

Reach the columnist at smodrich@asu.edu or follow him on Twitter @modrich_22