With their first pick, at no. 5 overall, in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Phoenix Suns didn’t really surprise anyone in selecting a big man. While it was somewhat surprising to see them pass up an opportunity to select Nerlens Noel, as he was still on the board, Alex Len was a player that was on their radar a great deal heading up to the draft.
The Suns actually moved up a pick for their second pick of the first round, going all the way up to the no. 29 pick from 30th overall. With that pick, the Suns decided to look at the backcourt, selecting Kentucky guard Archie Goodwin. Goodwin came into this draft with some mixed reviews, but overall he looks like a good fit for Phoenix.
Athletically, Goodwin is outstanding, which gives him some upside as the total package. At 6’5″, he needs to bulk up a little bit more, but the skill is there. He had a disappointing freshman season for the Wildcats, but came into this draft as the youngest player in the entire class, as he won’t turn 19 until August.
Out of high school, Goodwin looked like the next big thing to come out of Kentucky. But it was a disappointing season for the Wildcats, and Goodwin saw his stock slip up a bit. Much of that was due to a high turnover rate, but he averaged a touch over 14 points a game, four rebounds, and three assists per game.
As of right now, Goodwin is a pretty raw player. He’s as good an athlete as there is in this class, but needs to improve his shooting (44 percent from the field, 27 percent from deep in 2012-13) and his passing ability/decision making. If he can refine even one of those aspects of his game, he can be a weapon in the backcourt for the Suns.
His age makes him a project. But he has huge upside. Many have have looked at him as a potential steal in this class, as he’s even drawn some comparisons to someone like Russell Westbrook. The Suns are in complete rebuilding mode, and can take their time developing him. This could pan out to be an excellent pick for the new regime in the desert.