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The Disney character that best fits the Suns is...

The Suns enter the Orlando Bubble without the services of Kelly Oubre, Jr.. What if Phoenix could fill that need...with a Disney character?

What will Disney life be like for the Heat? Details from the NBAs 113-page safety plan Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Seeing as the 22 teams in the NBA are heading to a world of wonderment and of fantasy, let’s play a game, shall we? Let’s pretend. Let’s make believe that the Suns could replace Kelly Oubre Jr.’s vacant roster spot...with a Disney character.

SB Nation proposed this exact idea to SB Nation site managers of all remaining NBA teams that are entering the ‘bub. Teams can fill their needs with a Disney character, but in order to make it fair (and to avoid everyone taking Hercules), we’ll do a random team order and choose characters via a draft. No Marvel or Star Wars characters would be in the draft pool.

Bright Side of the Sun received the 9th overall pick.

Let the fun begin.

The Bright Side draft war room was lowly lit, with plumes of cigar smoke bouncing off the few beams of light that penetrated the air space. Crumbled papers of frustration were scattered upon a coffee stained carpet near a wired wastebasket and it was clear that someone wasn’t a very good shot. There were more mistakes outside of the receptacle than in. The white board was graffitied with pictures of countless Disney prospect names, noting their height, weight, and special abilities. The tension in the air could be cut only by the Sword in the Stone.

Oh, who am I kidding? Truth be told it was a text thread between myself, Dave King, and Greg Esposito. Ahoy-hoy.

The strategy was simple: we needed to replace the services of Kelly Oubre, Jr.

Speed. Agility. Stamina. Perhaps even someone (or something) that could dunk with the same ferocity and flair that Tsunami Papi provides. The prospects were endless. But only one would be the ideal fit we desired.

Let your imaginations run wild. Are you picturing Disney characters in your mind? Are you bathing in the nostalgia of your childhood? Are you thinking of visiting your parents house, where you know you’ll find a collection of antiquated Disney VHS tapes? (Side note: go look to see if you have any ‘black diamond’ edition Disney tapes. You may be rich and you don’t even know it.)

We scouted numerous prospects, weighed their pros and cons as potential suitors, and prepared for the 9th pick.

Our first instinct was to determine who the best possible Disney-character-as-an-NBA-player would be. Enter a character who was sharpshooter from deep (ideal for the modern NBA), who robbed from the rich (which would equate to some great steals-per-game numbers), and who would be a great player/coach/GM archetype: Robin Hood. Just look at the job he did whipping the Merry Men into shape.

And with the first pick...

Well, at least we know we are on the right track. We are thinking like Colangelo’s and not like McDonough’s. Good to know. Robin Hood, a deadly shooter, would be an ideal fit on the Milwaukee Bucks. Great pick Brew Hoop.

Numerous characters that meet our needs were still on the board. The hope is that journey to #9 would allow us to take one of these potentially talented and magical figures, knowing full well that no matter who we chose, it was just a game.

The next couple few picks were of no significance to our needs:

Jiminy Cricket goes #2 overall?! Seeing as the Rockets are a team that is embracing the small ball concept, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised. He is as about as small as you get.

Simba brings leadership and the ‘Hakuna Matata’ attitude to New Orleans, Maui adds size and strength next to Rudy Gobert, and the Beast will be miserable with all of the hair in the South Beach sun. Washington chooses the highly recognizable Mickey Mouse. Perhaps he will take the minutes John Wall has abandoned for the past year and a half.

The anticipation was growing. Our pick was getting near. So far, our #1 prospect (outside of Robin Hood) was still on the board. And then the realization set in. Being 9th in the draft is, well, typical Suns. Yes, of course the Laker site Silver Screen and Roll received the pick two ahead of us. Why wouldn’t they? Even in a fantasy character draft with a random order I get to picture Magic Johnson smiling like it’s 2017...

2017 NBA Draft Lottery Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

So now they were on the board, two picks ahead of us, just like ’17. And who do they take? One of our top prospects:

Truthfully I was surprised to see the Genie from Aladdin last as long as he did. His potential as a player is limitless. He can morph into whatever type of player he wants, he grants wishes, and he is a riot during postgame interviews.

The only disadvantage of having Genie on your team is you are constantly ensuring that his lamp is in a safe and secure place. If his lamp were to fall in to the wrong hands, the results could be disastrous for the Lakers. Hmmm...

No worries though, we still had a solid prospect still out there. Just as long as no one takes—

Double doh! The Kings added a god. I’m pretty sure he’ll be setting some excruciatingly painful picks for De’Aaron Fox in the high post. And when he dunks? Lightning.

The Pick

The time had come. Plenty of talent was still available for us to choose from. We needed that perfect addition to the team, someone who could fill the void that Oubre left. We needed someone vicious and primal, loyal and brave.

We needed someone with hair that rivaled Kelly.

There was only one character that met all of our needs perfectly, and he didn’t need a magical lamp or the DNA of an immortal to do so. He was a guy we talked about all along.

He was the King of the Jungle:

He’s quick. He’s agile. He has a killer wingspan. He adds toughness and a mean streak to the Suns roster. He’s high-flying and strong as hell. He hangs out with apes, so you know he and the Suns Gorilla would get along splendidly.

Tarzan is made for the NBA. He is a steal at #9.

The Bright Side war room erupted with jubilation. Bottles of champagne exploded with victorious suds (thankfully Dave had his goggles prepared and was not blinded). Espo was passing out cigars like he just became a father. The time and effort paid off with an ideal fit for the Phoenix Suns. We did it!

Didn’t we?


Did the Bright Side Draft Team get it right by drafting Tarzan?

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The Rest of the Draft

The draft continued on, but we cared not of the results. We did our jobs. We earned our paychecks. We went back to our normal jobs.

It was interesting to see the different routes taken by opposing sites. Mr. Incredible next to Nikola Jokic in Denver would create some problems for teams, although the pace of play would grind to a halt. Peter Pan would fly through the air for the Magic and you’d never have to worry about him getting old. Air Bud on the 76ers? We’ve actually seen his skill set before and I’m impressed.

Notable Characters not Drafted:

  • Goofy. I get it. He is clumsy, but he does have a little bit of size to him.
  • Donald Duck. Another classic Disney character who didn’t make the cut. I’m sure his attitude would be a problem in the locker room and he’d be harder to understand than Igor Kokoskov.
  • Prince Charming. Definitely a “face of the franchise” guy.
  • Aladdin. Really? This guy would average 5 steals a game! The footwork, the mobility; Al would be a great addition to a team in need of defense. Scoring, on the other hand...he needed a Genie to help him to do that.

For those of you interested in how the rest of the draft went:

One fun thing about this draft is seeing all of the different SB Nation site names. Some delve into the team history, some use the geo-location, and some I truly just don’t get. I do love ‘Bright Side of the Sun’ as compared to other sites. It’s quite clever.

‘Twas a fun draft that happened once upon a time...

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