Are Phoenix Suns Most Underrated Team In NBA?

Phoenix Suns Chris Paul, Devin Booker, Deandre Ayton, NBA Playoffs
NBA Analysis Network

All the talk this NBA season has been about the Golden State Warriors fast start, the emergence of teams like the Bulls, Wizards and Hornets, and about the Los Angeles Lakers struggling. But what about the defending Western Conference champions? 

How come we have not heard anything about the Phoenix Suns, who currently find themselves riding a 13-game win streak, the longest active win streak in the NBA? 

The Suns are arguably the hottest team in the league right now and for those wondering, the pun is intended here! Phoenix may have shocked many last season, reaching the NBA Finals in their first trip to the postseason since 2010, but their early season success should not come as a shocker this year. 

They finished the 2020-21 regular season ranking 5th in offensive rating and 9th in defensive rating and they only got better in terms of roster construction this year. Devin Booker, Chris Paul, Deandre Ayton and Mikal Bridges still remain the core of this team, but with the additions of Landry Shamet, JaVale McGee and Elfrid Payton, the Suns now have even more depth than they had a season ago. 

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Ranking 14th in the league in bench points per game last season, the Suns currently find themselves 4th in the NBA in bench points per game at 38.9 points per game and have shown no signs of slowing down.

What makes Phoenix such an underrated team this season and one of the better teams in the league is the fact that they just show up, do their jobs and leave with no questions asked. There is no drama surrounding the Suns, there are no question marks about their future and they know that they can make it back to the NBA Finals, so they really do not care what people are saying about them! 

After beating the San Antonio Spurs on the road 115-111, the Suns extended their win streak to 13 games, their longest win streak since winning a franchise-record 17 straight games during the 2006-07 season when they were led by Steve Nash and Amar’e Stoudemire. 

“I really don’t think about nothing, it’s really just a number,” Suns guard Cam Payne said after the game in regards to the win streak. “Honestly, we just went 1-0 today.”

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This is the kind of mentality this entire Suns team plays with and is one of the reasons why they are as good as they are. They do not let emotions get the best of them and they treat each game equally, which is head coach Monty Williams’ teachings rubbing off on his players. 

When looking at the Suns bench, they only outscored that of the Spurs bench on Monday night 48-45, but Cam Payne’s energy and his 20 points really helped Phoenix continue their win streak. 

“I just try to come in and do my job and that’s a part of it,” Payne said after the game. “Change the pace of the game, be aggressive defensively, and just try to give the starters much-needed rest. But also, give them a sense of ‘the bench is ready to play too.”

Over the course of their 13 consecutive wins, the Suns are averaging 113.5 points per game, which is the second-best offensive scoring output in the league behind just the Golden State Warriors and the most impressive thing about this team this season is that they are extremely unselfish. 

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Devin Booker is obviously their best scorer and Deandre Ayton is a force in the paint, but no matter who has the ball on offense, they are always looking to get their teammates open. Booker or someone else may have a good shot, but looking for ways to get a great shot is all that matters to this team, hence why they rank 4th in the league in assists per game. 

Being one of the most balanced teams in the NBA right now and having multiple All-Star talents on their roster to hold things down, Phoenix should be right next to the Golden State Warriors in the conversation for being the best team in the league. Winning 13 straight games in the NBA is no small feat and while this streak could wind up coming to an end over the next week or so, there is no denying that the Phoenix Suns are still the team to beat in the Western Conference.

About Brett Siegel 1870 Articles
Brett Siegel joined NBA Analysis Network as an NBA Insider and Journalist in 2020 after previously working with Louisville Basketball and FanSided covering the NBA. He was a member of our staff until April 2022.