Most NBA talking heads thought the Phoenix Suns were bypassing this year on their way to a loaded 2014 NBA Draft, but after a hot start, plans may have changed. According to NBA.com's Scott Howard-Cooper, the Suns are open to trading 2014 draft picks if it means getting an established star in return.
The Suns have their own selection in the 2014 draft, along with Indiana's pick that is top-14 protected, which is basically a guarantee to go to Phoenix. They have the Timberwolves pick, which is top-13 protected and they have Washington's pick that is top-12 protected. That gives Phoenix the possibility of having four first round players, in addition to last year's first round picks, Archie Goodwin and Alex Len.
The Suns' pick is the most valuable of the bunch since it's the only one with a shot at landing at No. 1, but the team is nonetheless willing to part with it if the right deal comes along. Suns general manager Ryan McDonough spoke to Howard-Cooper about the organization's thought process.
"I think one of the things that’s important for people to realize is that we may not draft four players even if we have four picks," McDonough told NBA.com. "Our preference would probably be to maybe package a few of them. We’re obviously all looking for stars and we feel like we can put together a package as good, if not better, than any other team in the league if and when a star becomes available."
McDonough took over the reigns as Phoenix's general manager in May and has quickly collected the assets needed to put the team in this flexible of a position.
Phoenix is off to a 12-9 start that's surpassing preseason expectations, but the Suns are still working through a rebuilding phase, early success aside. Trading several picks for an established contributor, rather than hanging onto all of them and relying more heavily on their ability to develop players, might help expedite that process.