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2012 NBA Free Agency: Is The Desert The Place To Be?

With the 2012 NBA Free Agency starting exactly one week ago, some may not have anticipated the moves that have been made. Many assumed that Dwight Howard was to team up with Deron Williams in Brooklyn and Steve Nash was to go back home and play for his Canadian team; the Toronto Raptors.

But no one would have assumed that the Atlanta Hawks would trade away their franchise player in Joe Johnson, nonetheless to the Brooklyn Nets who just so happen to be an Eastern Conference team. Or that Omer Asik and Landry Fields would be getting paid roughly more than $6 million per year with the offer sheets Houston and Toronto signed them to respectively. Non one expected Ray Allen to bail on the Celtics and sign with the Celtics biggest rivals, the Miami Heat. Also when Steve Nash decided to sign with the Lakers and give Kobe another shot at a ring.

Those were and have been the story lines of the Free Agency thus far, but here in this article you will hear about the one team whose signings have not been covered as much, yet could make a great impact on the team next year or most certainly in their near future. That team in my opinion is none other than the Phoenix Suns.

The Suns have moved on from the Steve Nash and Grant Hill and are not in the stages of rebuilding. From the looks of it they started to come along and done a very good job. The first step was the 2012 NBA Draft when the selected what seemed to be Nash’s replacement, Kendall Marshall. The silky smooth, pass first point guard from North Carolina was the perfect replacement for Nash, but with the signing of another guard that I will soon mention, Marshall’s turn at the helm might have to wait a few more years.

The Suns first off-season acquisition as it seems, was signing New Orleans shooting guard Eric Gordon to a four year $58 million offer sheet, in which Gordon is doing everything in his power to have the Hornets not match the offer because his mind is set on playing for the Suns and there is nothing the Hornets can do to change his mind.

The Gordon signing coming from the Suns was quite surprising to many as why would Gordon want to leave a team that just drafted Anthony Davis for a team whose franchise player is about to leave them? Well I guess Gordon knew the future and knew what the Suns were planning to do. Gordon is going to come in and be the Suns go to perimeter scorer, he is one of the brightest young shooting guards the NBA has and has shown throughout his four seasons in the NBA, three with the Clippers and one injury plagued season with the Hornets in which he played in nine games posting an average of 21 points per game. He is a flat out scorer and is as good as shooter as in the league once he catches fire.

Sun’s second signing is one of my personal favourites, Michael Beasley. The Suns signed Beasley to a three year $18 million deal. Beasley is a flat out scorer, can score with the best of them in this league. Do not believe me? Look at his per 48 point totals. For those who think Beasley is a bust or has not lived up to potential he showed in high school and at Kansas State has never given Beasley a fair shot. If you are comparing high school/Kansas State Beasley to NBA Beasley you will notice that they are the exact same player….a player that can points on the board in numerous ways. The only difference is that in high school and at Kansas State he is given the opportunities to do just that, score. In his Miami and Minnesota situations he was never given the minutes to fully show what he can do. I think with the ability to get a fresh start, and almost guaranteed starting spot at the three position, I really do see Beasley putting up all star like numbers next season for the Suns.

Doc Rivers who has been around the league for quite sometime now, had these words about Beasley when Beasley scored 19 points in only 23 minutes against his Celtics:

So there you have it, a NBA Champion coach and coach of the year even thinks that Beasley is as gifted scorer as anyone in this league, of course if is given the chance, and I think that chance is with the Suns.

Lastly, the signing of a familiar name in the Suns organization and fan base; Goran Dragic. Dragic was inked to a deal for fours years at $30 million. It is funny because Goran Dragic was supposed to be the successor to Steve Nash before they traded him to the Rockets for Aaron Brooks, and we all saw how that worked out for the Suns. So now that he is a free-agent why not just bring Dragic back and just so happen be the replacement to Steve Nash. During his first stint with the Suns his flashy and magnificent play in just limited minutes sparked many fans and staff as the young Dragic became a player the Suns could turn to when Nash was to leave. They then traded him to much hate to find him sit on the bench in Houston thanks to the emergence of Kyle Lowry (now with the Raptors). In his first full season with the Rockets Dragic put up respectable minutes but was still finding himself backing up Lowry, until Lowry went down with an injury. Once Dragic stepped into that starting role for the Rockets he flourished. Starting 28 games he averaged 18 points, 8 assists, and 4 rebounds in 36 minutes of action. This was perfect timing heading into free agency as an unrestricted free agent and he is about to cash in and finally get his Chance as a full time starter for the Suns.Dragic’s flashy play and ruthless attacking skills will be great to free up players like Gordon and Beasley on the perimeter.

In conclusion, I feel that the Lance Blanks and the rest of the Phoenix Suns staff have done a great job this off-season picking up a young talented core that will stick to together for at least three years and could surprise many in the Western Conference.

Written By: Matt Ravida

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