The latest NBA mock draft for 2018 features several talented prospects that the top teams in the NBA Draft lottery will be looking to select. The Phoenix Suns could be among those teams with a chance for a high pick. Should they fall to a spot between No. 6 and No. 13, the team might consider making a trade to move up in the selection order. Several prospects could be potential picks for the Suns, including international star Luka Doncic and Missouri’s Michael Porter Jr. Here’s the latest on the Suns’ impending roster situation ahead of the NBA Draft next June.
As of this report, ESPN has indicated that at least one of the Phoenix Suns’ big men, Alex Len, is unhappy with his playing time. The former No. 5 draft pick in 2013 is averaging under a double-double with nine points per game and 9.3 rebounds a game. However, he is part of a roster that has two veterans at his spot getting more time ahead of him. Len didn’t participate in two of the team’s last three games and is playing just 22 minutes per game. Interim head coach has decided to use Tyson Chandler and Greg Monroe mostly and even started the duo against the Pelicans’ powerful frontcourt recently.
Len told AZCentral about his frustrations over the situation in Phoenix.
“I want to be out there and I want to compete. I put in the work hoping to show my skills on the court. So when you’re not able to help your team it’s frustrating.
“Obviously I want to win for the Phoenix Suns but at the same time when you play you showcase yourself for the other 29 teams. I try not to think about it.”
The former top-five draft pick could very well become a trade asset should the Suns decide to move up in the NBA Draft. He becomes an unrestricted free agent for the offseason, providing the Suns with an incentive to put together a package with whichever pick they might get and move up in the draft order. Getting into the top three or four could net Phoenix a future star like Luka Doncic or Michael Porter Jr. from Missouri.
NBA AM: The First 2018 NBA Mock Draft: With College Basketball getting underway and things starting to get interesting in the standings of the NBA, what better time to drop a 2018 Mock Draft than on Thanksgiving. https://t.co/yYXT827cx5 @bballinsiders pic.twitter.com/xhcyyeG5bk
— Basketball Insiders (@BBallInsiders) November 23, 2017
Sports Illustrated listed Texas center Mohamed Bamba as the choice the Phoenix Suns should make at the No. 5 spot. However, it’s already apparent they have an overabundance of big men to work with in their lineup. Picking up a talented player such as Luka Doncic makes much more sense for a Phoenix Suns team with Josh Jackson and Devin Booker in the lineup. Doncic is heralded for his ball-handling and playmaking, which is certainly something that Phoenix could use.
The team could also opt for Porter Jr., who is pegged in some drafts as a pick in the top three. Porter won’t be displaying much of his skill set this college basketball season due to an unfortunate injury. That still has him considered a top-five pick, and Phoenix could hold that spot without needing to trade.
— Kentucky BB Report (@uk_bb_fanly) November 28, 2017
While he gives the Suns another forward, he could be featured in the frontcourt along with this year’s exciting rookie Josh Jackson. That would give Phoenix quite the scoring group on the court, with Devin Booker, Jackson, and Porter Jr. forming a brand new “Big Three” in Phoenix for the future. Still, it would seem the team could really use a playmaker to find Booker, Jackson, and the rest of the players. That might mean doing everything they can to draft Doncic next summer.
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) November 25, 2017
The Phoenix Suns seem to have the type of dilemma emerging teams would love to have, as they continue to acquire all sorts of young talent. Doncic and Porter Jr. could be two of those types of players that only come around once in a while for a team to select. The Suns’ next draft move could be the one that puts them closer to the playoffs over the next few seasons.
[Featured Image by Lefteris Pitarakis/AP Images]