Stop ignoring the Phoenix Suns now

Stop ignoring the Phoenix Suns now

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                                                                                                                           "We also recognize the importance and triviality of these regular-season games. You get what I'm saying? We are aware that building is key; the 60 or so victories from the previous year are insufficient. So for now, all we can do is attempt to avoid going too high or too low. Keep constructing.

The defensive portion of such structure has already begun. Although it's early in the season, the Suns' defense is among the top five in the NBA. This is consistent with the previous two years, when the Suns had top-10 defenses, and it's easy to understand why. They have athleticism all over the floor, a strong rim protector in Ayton to back up CP3, a quality perimeter defender in Bridges, and CP3 is still a force at his position.

Formerly, Booker was the simple target for his defense, but he worked hard in that area. His improvement in defensive projected plus/minus is the greatest indication (there is no great, public defensive statistic, but the EPM at Dunks & Threes is the one people in NBA front offices say may be the best of the lot). By this statistic, Booker was a negative defender for the majority of his career. However, he slowly improved, and last season, he was +.03, or essentially a neutral defender.

Ask Klay Thompson, who went 1-of-8 from the field against the Suns on Tuesday, how Booker has progressed as a defender. Thompson understood how to get under Booker's skin and was thrown out of a game for the first time in his career.

With incredible stats to start the season, Booker has continued to be the offensive spark.


Williams said of Booker, "I think he's not just a terrific player, but he's an incredible competitor." "He has never backed down from someone or a circumstance, in my experience. And that's why I find him to be equally as impressive for his scoring and defensive performances.

The offense of the Suns as a whole is still developing. The Suns play at one of the slowest tempos in the league, and the halfcourt offense was underwhelming in the first couple of games but has since improved (as is traditional with Chris Paul teams). The Suns are second in the league in field goals assisted, and the ball is flowing in the half court, but their finishing is inconsistent. The offense doesn't seem particularly outstanding thus far, but it feels good without Booker.

We may have all overlooked the Suns for this other reason.


During the summer, everything we heard about Phoenix was about owner Robert Sarver's transgressions (who will now sell the team). The Suns decided to focus on internal improvement as the majority of the West's other teams improved their rosters. That internal development has so far only sometimes surfaced.

Williams wants his squad to concentrate on that development right now in order to develop positive habits that will help them avoid a humiliating defeat in the postseason. Williams is happy with the summertime work his players did, but it's time for them to get over the disappointment of last season.


Regarding last year's playoff exit, Williams stated, "You definitely let everything go." "Because it's a fresh agreement once the season begins. But summer is challenging. You endure that type of pain, whatever it may be. It may inspire you to put in even more effort than you normally would.

But as soon as the season begins, it's as though new difficulties have appeared. But I'm willing to bet that everyone who was in that locker room and is now in ours dealt with it. I'd been pondering it all summer. Once the season begins, you face new obstacles and think about various teams, but for some people, this may be a tremendous motivation.


Ayton said it more forcefully.


Following his Suns' victory over the Clippers, he declared, "I'm not talking about last year, only this year."

The Suns are 3-1 after four games this season (their only loss in the last seconds to red-hot Portland). This team is subtly driven to show that the outcome of the previous season was an aberration. There is nothing more serious going on than that one terrible game.


The postseason will, however, be the true test. The Suns are preparing for that time because they are aware of it.


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