Ladies and gentlemen, the worst team in the NBA… the Phoenix Suns!
Sad but true. The Phoenix Suns are undoubtedly the worst team in the NBA this season – not because of their play, not because of their lack of effort, not because of their coaching, but just because they might be in the worst situation of any NBA ball club.
Simply put, they’re stuck in basketball limbo. They’re way too good and way too competitive, with Steve Nash at the helm pissing his career away to give it his all alongside Grant Hill, the consummate pro, to fall into a great lottery spot and expedite the rebuilding process or even establish it, and at the same time, they’re not good enough to compete for a legitimate championship – or even qualify for a Playoff spot.
The root of their problems stems from their stubbornness, and stupidity, in the front office. Among a long list of big mistakes, their first was acquiring Hedo Turkoglu a day after they traded for Josh Childress. Already at that point, they had an overflow of “tweeners” who were too small to be big men but too big to be guards. To amplify the stupidity, they got Turkoglu, who was about three years past his prime and earned about double what he should have been making. That experiment died pretty quickly.
But even after the failed experiment in having fifteen small forwards and no big men on the roster ruined the first half of the Sun’s season, they still stuck to their guns. The second part of their big mistake was not realizing when the dream was over. After losing Amare, the forecasts were already dull. But with a glimmer of hope resting on Nash, the team churned forward. When things failed, however, the team just wouldn’t admit defeat. They tried to rebuild on the run, which is rarely a successful route.
They traded away Turkoglu and Richardson for Vince Carter and Marcin Gortat in midseason, and while they were able to steal away a competent big man, they took on Vince’s bloated salary and half assed production while giving away J-Rich, a perfect Nash complement. And then near the deadline, they traded for Aaron Brooks.
So when things weren’t clicking this year, the team essentially gutted itself to get Brooks, Gortat, and the right to get Carter off the books for next season, all to team with Nash, in what seems a futile and dead effort to win Stevie his one title.
What they should have just done is realize that their situation is beyond patchwork repair – as good as Steve Nash is, and as good as modern medicine is, he is still 37 and the team’s other best players are Grant Hill (38), Carter (34), Brooks, and Gortat. Brooks is having a terrible shooting year and seems to have lost all of his confidence and swagger, while Gortat is serviceable and really energetic but his ceiling isn’t all that great.
Where is that kind of roster headed? Their uppermost ceiling rests among the opening round fodder for the Spurs or Lakers, which means playing hard just to squeak into the Playoffs and then get demolished.
If the team really wanted to win Nash his title, they shouldn’t have been so stingy with their money all those years when they threw away first round picks like Rajon Rondo. Saving themselves a few measly million every year has surely come back to bite them in their ass.
Now they’re stuck with an aging superstar who won’t ever bail because he’s too good of a teammate but who’s also their only draw for home games, surrounded by a mediocre cast of semi decent players who won’t ever be first or second options on a title team. To make matters worse, they won’t be able to get anything of comparable value for giving away Nash, they won’t get a very high pick in the upcoming draft because they tried just hard enough to win around 40 games, and they’ve got Josh Childress riding the pine for 6 million dollars for the next three or four seasons.
They should have traded Nash at the deadline, when teams would have killed for him, like the Magic or Knicks or even Mavs, and gotten a nice draft pick out of it. Now, as it stands, they’re in the worst spot of any team in the league. They have no young blossoming potential All Star prospects, their anchor players are in the twilight years of their career, and their playing style only works with their one superstar, who, at this stage, has no one to carry with him to Playoff glory.
They definitely have the saddest situation in the league. They have a mediocre present and a bleak future. I mean, even the Timberwolves, with all their stupidity, still have young talent and a good shot at the number one pick. Best of luck to Steve Nash – I’m definitely hoping someone puts him out of his misery.