The Phoenix Suns had quite the season last year.
Many believed the Suns may be in play for the number one overall pick, but instead finished 48-34, narrowly missing out on the postseason. Now they will focus on how they can improve and next week’s draft could be pivotal to the future of the Suns.
The Suns hold the 14th, 18th and 27th-overall picks in the first round.
Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated projects the Suns to select Croatian forward Dario Saric with the 14th-overall pick, but lists former Duke Blue Devils forward Rodney Hood and former Kentucky Wildcats’ swingman James Young as possible picks.
Saric could go anywhere from Nos. 8-16, as teams continue to evaluate the Adriatic League MVP. The Suns are looking at several perimeter players here — including Hood and James Young, per a source — but if Saric, a point-forward type with fast improving perimeter skills, falls to the Suns he will be tough to pass up.
Saric measured in at 6’10 and 223 lbs. with a wignspan of 6’10 at the 2012 Hoops Summit. Last season, he averaged 16.7 points, 9.7 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.3 steals per game while shooting 49.7% from the field, 34.5% from beyond the arc and 68.1% from the free throw line. He is ranked by Jonathan Givony of Draft Express as eighth-best prospect in the draft.
Hood measured in at 6’8.5 and 208 lbs. with a wingspan of 6’8.5 at the NBA’s Scouting Combine. He averaged 16.1 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game last season. He shot 46.4% from the field, 42.0% from three and 80.7% from the charity stripe for the Blue Devils last season. He is ranked as the 21st-best prospect in the draft by Givony.
Young measured in at 6’6.75 and 213 lbs. with a wingspan of 7’0. He averaged 14.3 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game while shooting 40.7% from the field, 34.9% from three and 70.6% from the free throw line. He is ranked as the draft’s 24th-best prospect by Givony.