Paul is quickly cementing himself as one of the best Suns players ever
When we first shared the breaking rumor just over a year ago right here on Bright Side, opinions were scattered.
Should the Phoenix Suns blow up their 8-0 Bubble team just for the chance to acquire a 36-year injury-prone point guard who probably won’t be able to carry a young Suns team any further than Ricky Rubio could?
A full 46% of Bright Side fans were against all versions of deals that could acquire CP3.
Voting on November 10, 2020:
Our own John Voita what can be considered a ‘hit piece’ against the idea of acquiring Chris Paul, and an extremely slanted poll on his Suns JAM podcast’s twitter feed even more Suns fans were against the trade.
— Suns JAM Session Podcast (@SunsJAM) November 11, 2020
But when the deal was struck less than a week later, so were Suns fans with stars in their eyes.
Suddenly, the pundits around the league were calling the Suns legitimate. Suns fans went from ‘oh no not that old guy!’ to ‘we can steal home court advantage in the playoffs!’.
Indeed, Chris Paul was exactly what the Suns needed to realize their potential as a team. He solidified their focus, their drive, and their execution on both ends of the court.
After being the very worst NBA team from 2015-2019, the Suns rising Suns have exploded to the most wins of ANY NBA TEAM since Paul’s arrival.
No NBA team has more than the Suns’ 75 wins in the last 365 days — 61 regular season + 14 playoffs.
Initially I was against the Chris Paul trade. Too old, too expensive ($41 million), too injury prone for my liking. I wanted to stay the course with Ricky and Kelly and see where Book and DA could take us.
But then I heard how much CP wanted to be in Phoenix, playing alongside Devin Booker. And I saw how invested he was in the Suns, how he called them ‘special’ and a ‘family’. I saw how much Booker revered CP, how much everyone on the team revered him. How lock-step he was with Monty Williams from day one.
I saw the future (maybe not as clearly as some) and what I saw was a Booker and DA who could dominate the playoffs with CP at the helm. What I saw was Mikal Bridges being the offensive and defensive glue that held it all together in such a quiet it’s STILL niche to call him a star.
I saw the Suns franchise rising like the Phoenix from the ashes.
Now in year two, we wondered whether Paul could keep going at such a high level. Yet, he once again became the only player in NBA history to tally 125+ assists, 30+ steals and fewer than 30 turnovers through the first 12 games of a season, which he’s now done twice (2010-11 season with New Orleans). Oh, and he leads the league in assists per game too.
The Suns have won 9 straight games, already back in their now-familiar spot near the top of the Western Conference.
Enjoy these days, Suns fans! This might turn out to be the best Suns team you’ve ever seen.
Can you believe it’s only been a year since the trade?