By Jared Doyle @outofboundsjay on April 29, 2014
Although the Phoenix Suns missed the playoffs this year, they had arguably one of the best comeback seasons of any franchise in the league. Finishing with a 48-34 record, the Suns even had one of their own (Goran Dragic) win the Most Improved Player of the Year, an award reflective of how this team outperformed all expectations this year. Here are the five biggest rumors surrounding the Phoenix Suns right now.
Even with how well Goran Dragic has played this year, don't expect the Phoenix Suns to let Eric Bledsoe just walk away as a free agent. The feisty point guard averaged over 17 points, four rebounds and five assists a game this year, and that was while missing over 40 games. The combination of Bledsoe and Dragic in the backcourt is one of the biggest reasons the Suns were such a force this season. Bledsoe will be back in a Suns uniform next year.
Goran Dragic had the best season of his career this year, averaging 20.3 points, 5.9 assists and 3.2 rebounds while ultimately winning the league's Most Improved Player Award. Much of this leap was due to Eric Bledsoe being out over half the season and Dragic having to take on more of the scoring load. If Bledsoe is healthy and returns to Phoenix, expect Dragic's overall numbers to take a slight dip.
Channing Frye was one of the lone starters this season to play all 82 games, and that is a huge turnaround from the season before when Frye sat out the majority of it due to an enlarged heart. Although his numbers in 2013-14 return season weren't the highest, it shows promise that if healthy, Frye is one of the better stretch forwards in the league. Another healthy season for Frye isn't out of the question, but playing all 82 games might be.
The biggest downside to how well the Suns played this season is that their pick in the 2014 NBA Draft will most likely not be a top-ten selection. In fact it will most likely be the 14th, 18th or 27th in the first round. Although the 2014 draft class is stacked with talent, don't expect the Suns to sign three rookies out of the first round. The Suns will most likely look to trade one or two of these picks for a veteran frontcourt player.
Jeff Hornacek was the only coach within reach of snagging the Coach of the Year Award away from Gregg Popovich this season, which is saying a lot. Hornacek has done so much for this franchise in his one year as head coach, not only by instilling a winning mentality but by helping develop players like Goran Dragic into a franchise cornerstone talent. With a three-year contract in tow, Hornacek isn't leaving Phoenix anytime soon.
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