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Suns prepare for new era of fluxball

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Terry Porter is in. Vinnie Del Negro is out.

Defensive intensity and deeper rotations are in. Seven seconds or less is out.

Of course, observant Suns fans saw SSOL die in game 6 of the 2007 Spurs series and watched D'Antoni try and adjust his system to the reality of playoff basketball culminating in the Shaq trade in early February.

The Suns ceded their "offense is the best defense" philosophy but failed to replace it with "defense is the best defense". Ultimately, they were never able to develop the flexibility of mind or roster to respond to Grant Hill's late season injury which is the main reason the Suns lost the first three games of this year's playoffs.

Terry Porter now takes over a team in flux. Stacked with aging stars, young talent and an incredible enigma entering his prime. He seems to recognize the team's flaws and is confident that with a few more pieces and roster tweaks the Suns will be right back in the mix. I would expect nothing less from the guy. What else can he say?

Fortunately for Porter, the bar has been lowered. The Suns will enter the next season for the first time in four seasons on no one's list of potential champions let alone picked as division winners. That provides the golden opportunity for a better then expected result and also gives Porter the freedom to fail - something D'Antoni hasn't felt in a long time.

So welcome Fluxball to Phoenix - where the organization has no choice but to double down on the Big Gamble and can realistically end the season as a 2nd seed or in the lottery.

Suns fans should be surprised by nothing and appreciate anything. In its own way it promises to be a season filled with more joy for all involved and I am starting to get excited about it already.



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