The 2023-24 season is the start of a new era for the Phoenix Suns. New owner, new coach and a brand new roster. Except Devin Booker!
He is the lone survivor of the team that made the 2021 NBA Finals and seemed like they would deliver a championship for the first time in franchise history for the basketball mad city Phoenix.
They lead the Bucks 2-0. That 2-0 lead turned into a crushing 4-2 loss. The fall out has been felt ever since leading to rapid change within the organization.
Now there is Kevin Durant, Devin Booker and Bradley Beal. The new big three. A championship coach in Frank Vogel. The expectations are high to go one step further than the team did in 2021. This was a rapid turnaround going from 8-0 in the NBA Bubble and missing the playoffs in 2020 to the NBA finals the following season.
But this team will be tested on whether it is possible to win a championship without a point guard. Especially since the key to the Phoenix Suns’ success in the last few years was the addition of Chris Paul. There is no more Mikal Bridges, the elite wing defender. Can Frank Vogel’s renowned defensive schemes be enough to make up for it?
What we have seen so far
With the season a mere 7 games young, we have yet to see a full strength Phoenix Suns team on the court. The Phoenix Suns were on 3 game skid with Victor Wembanyama coming to town to inflict back to back home losses. The 19 year old having a historic night on the second match up scoring 38 points (15/26 FG), 10 rebounds, 2 Assists and 2 Blocks. Only Kevin Durant himself has had at least 35 points and 10 rebounds in a game at a younger age.
The road trip so far has yielded mixed results. The Philadelphia 76ers dominated the Phoenix Suns on Saturday night. Monday night saw a win against the Detroit Pistons that ended the slide. Kevin Durant lead the scoring again with 41 points and Eric Gordon playing perhaps his best game of the season so far.
These early games with a short handed roster are unlikely to matter much to most Phoenix Suns fans. The team is unlikely to be judged on their start to the season but on how they finish it.