Of the now three former Kentucky Wildcat guards on the team, Brandon Knight's ankle injury opened the door for another one-and-done Wildcat in Archie Goodwin.
In the seven games that Knight has missed, Goodwin has seen his minutes total jump from under 10 a game to an average of just over 20 minutes per game. With the expanded playing time, Goodwin has reached double figures in three of those games, including a season-high 15 points against the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday.
Goodwin is still raw in terms of having a defined role and game but he is already an excellent player in transition. He makes quick and decisive decisions on the break and because of his great measurable, 6-foot-5 and possesses great speed, he can easily get up the court and create fast break opportunities for himself and teammates.
Goodwin isn't the most efficient offensive player, but for the current role he is in, he doesn't need to be. In the last seven games, Goodwin has shown the promise that he can be an instant offense guy off the bench, ala Gerald Green from last year. As the Knight and Dragic trades depleted Phoenix's bench, it has given a much needed opportunity for young players such as Goodwin and T.J. Warren to earn extra playing time.
Even when Knight returns from his injury, Goodwin's short time with extended minutes has proven that he still deserves those minutes. Goodwin also provides Phoenix with the ability to have another guard who can function at both guard spots. Goodwin has no issue bringing up the ball, as well as he has no issue matching up with opposing two guards. Goodwin has the frame to add some needed up body strength, but another important factor to note with the second-year guard is that he is still only 20 years old.
Goodwin also posses world class athleticism. He can easily swipe a ball from one end, effortlessly get the ball to one of his teammates, then sky in the air for an easy dunk.
Even with the return of Knight, Goodwin's recent run of play has shown that he could function as a third guard. While the idea of playing with a three point guard lineup is dead, what Knight and Goodwin both bring is the ability to function in an off ball role. Goodwin isn't a great 3-point shooter but he is a capable one, as demonstrated by his 3-pointer against the Mavericks that put the Suns ahead for good on Sunday.
Goodwin's current game is reminiscent of Green's from last season. While Goodwin isn't the shooter that Green is, he can still fill the role as the third guard off the bench. With Green's free agency impending, Goodwin at the very least has shown that he can fill that role going forward. With him being so young, Goodwin's game still has room to grow. Goodwin may not be given the opportunity to do so if the Suns sign Knight, who is a restricted free agent, to a long term deal.