Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NBA. Each week we ask questions of the most plugged-in Phoenix Suns fans and fans of all teams across the country.
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As of today, the Phoenix Suns only have the 52nd overall pick, deep in the second round, in the 2023 NBA Draft. No first round pick. Not even a high second round pick for someone who might drop unexpectedly out of the first round. It’s a draft only Damon Allred could love.
So it’s not surprising that 35% of Suns fans who took our survey want to ignore the draft completely.
Another 26% just want to wallow in their own misery. Why? Partially because the San Antonio Spurs won the draft lottery to take the best big man of a generation while the Suns have nothing coming down the pike at all.
Almost 40% haven’t given up on James Jones completely. Some of you actually believe the Suns could flip the script and start putting actual effort into the NBA draft, from (gasp) scouting to (another gasp) actually taking someone in the first round.
Yet, here’s James Jones’ draft record:
- 2019: traded down from #6 (Jarrett Culver) to #11 to take Cameron Johnson; traded 2020 Bucks first round pick for 2019 #24 overall to take Ty Jerome (in those trades, the Suns also acquired veterans Dario Saric and Aron Baynes)
- 2020: took Jalen Smith at #10 overall, then traded him 1.5 years later for Torrey Craig
- 2021: traded OUT of the first round, sending #29 (Day’Ron Sharpe) to Nets for Landry Shamet
- 2022: was traded to OKC in 2020 for Chris Paul
- 2023: was traded, along with the 2025, 2027 and 2029 first round picks, plus Cameron Johnson and Mikal Bridges, for Kevin Durant
All tolled that’s ten first round picks, including 2018’s Mikal Bridges, turned into six veterans. Four of those veterans helped the Suns make the second round of the playoffs this year, but only one (Kevin Durant) has a guaranteed contract beyond one more season.
Not a single Suns draft pick since Deandre Ayton in 2018 remains on the roster.
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