DRAFT TRADE: Suns acquire No. 10 overall pick Mikal Bridges in trade with Philadelphia 76ers for No. 16 overall pick Zhaire Smith and 2021 first-round pick from Miami



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Pre-Draft Analysis

Areas Of Strength
There’s a youth movement going on -- again -- for the Phoenix Suns that is finally starting to produce decent results. Devin Booker was part of the original rebuilding wave and is the only player to flourish. There is also Josh Jackson, who finished his rookie season strongly. That means the Suns could be set at least for the immediate future at two-guard and small forward. Given that this team has come along so slowly, sealing up two spots is a sure sign of progress ... at least to a degree.

Needs Work
Where do we begin? The Suns, who hold the No. 1 overall pick, suffer from years of failed drafts and trades that didn’t produce the level of quality they wanted. There are holes and gaps throughout the roster. Specifically, there’s no intriguing big man or point guard in the rotation and that’s where the Suns should concentrate their Draft strategy. Alex Len and Dragan Bender haven’t worked out, while Tyson Chandler is pushing his late 30s. It’ll be very difficult to mismanage the No. 1 pick, so that’s in their favor.

Two Stats That Matter
30 -- The Suns were the first team to rank last in both offensive and defensive efficiency in a full, 82-game season since the Dallas Mavericks did it in 1992-93, when there were only 27 teams in the league. (The Charlotte Bobcats did it in the 2011-12, 66-game season).

45.9 -- The Suns ranked last in the league with an effective field goal percentage of just 45.9 percent on shots from outside the paint.

-- John Schuhmann

The Way To Go

Deandre Ayton played just down the road in Tucson at Arizona and brings the rare combination of size and athleticism that could make him a very good or possibly a great player in the NBA someday. While the game is drifting away from low-post centers, Ayton is too good to pass up, especially considering he is developing as a mid-range shooter. His game could copy that of Joel Embiid in Philly, and the Suns would be so fortunate.

2017-18 Team Stats (points per 100 possessions, with NBA rank) 
Offensive: 100.8 (30th)
Defensive: 110.6 (30th)

Under Contract
G: Brandon Knight
G: Tyler Ulis
G: Devin Booker
G: Devin Reed
G: Troy Daniels
G: Jared Dudley
F: Alan Williams
F: Josh Jackson
F: Marquese Chriss
F: TJ Warren
C: Dragan Bender
C: Tyson Chandler

Free Agents
G: Elfrid Payton (restricted)
F/G: Danuel House (restricted)
F: Alec Peters (restricted)
C: Alex Len (unrestricted)

Recent Draft History
2017: Josh Jackson (4), Devon Reed (32), Alec Peters (54).
2016: Dragan Bender (4), Georgios Papagiannis (13), traded to Sacramento; Skal Labissiere (28), traded to Sacramento; Tyler Ulis (34)
2015: Devin Booker (13), Andrew Harrison (44)
2014: T.J. Warren (14), Tyler Ennis (18), Bogdan Bogdanovic (27), Alec Brown (50)
2013: Alex Len (5), Nemanja Nedovic (30), Alex Oriakhi (57)
2012: Kendall Marshall (13)

-- Shaun Powell


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