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What Do The Phoenix Suns Need Headed Into the 2023 Offseason?

Phoenix Went All In and Lost

At the start of last season, it seemed like the Phoenix Suns NBA title odds were in jeopardy. Devin Booker suffered an injury that had him miss a month and a half, while Chris Paul’s production noticeably took a step back as he also dealt with injuries. Furthermore, the offseason drama around Deandre Ayton still affected the locker room.

But then, everything changed when Mat Ishbia completed the purchase of the Suns. He followed by making a big splash in NBA news, trading for Kevin Durant. Phoenix quickly became the hottest team for NBA picks despite Durant playing eight regular season games with his new team due to injuries.

What Do The Phoenix Suns Need Headed Into the 2023 Offseason?
Kevin Durant #35 of the Phoenix Suns - Matthew Stockman/Getty Images/afp

The lack of team camaraderie would prove detrimental in the playoffs, with the Suns struggling in the early games against the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round. However, Phoenix would still have some of the best NBA Finals odds. In the second round, the Denver Nuggets ended the Suns’ season, embarrassing them in Game 6, in Phoenix, with a scoreline of 125-100.

That loss led to head coach Monty Williams being fired. NBA betting is unclear who the next coach might be, but it will be one of many changes this team will undergo. Right now, only four players have guaranteed contracts for 2023-24.

All these possible offseason changes make NBA predictions interesting because the Suns could go in many different things. On the other hand, the team’s future is unclear.

2022-23 Season Record: 45-37

Status of Coach: Williams may have been scapegoated, but there is some reasoning in why the Suns let him go. Over the last two seasons, the Suns have been eliminated in embarrassing fashion, which undoubtedly played a factor, but Ishbia may also want to start putting “his people” in charge.

Positions of Need for the Suns

  • Depth
  • 3-point Shooting
  • More Depth

Possible Free Agency Plan

Only Booker, Durant, Ayton, and Landry Shamet have guaranteed contracts for next season. Paul could make $30.8 million, which won’t be guaranteed until June 28, with Cameron Payne in a similar boat, with his $6.5 million guaranteed the next day. If those contracts are guaranteed, the Suns will already have $165 million toward the cap, $30 million over the projected salary cap.

The salary cap may not mean much to Phoenix, with Ishbia already making it clear he wants to win a championship. Despite that, the cap situation will still diminish the Suns’ ability to add players for much-needed depth to build around Durant and Booker. That is why it seems likely that Ayton and/or Paul will no longer be on the team next season.

Ayton seems like the most likely option to be moved for many different reasons. For one, his value on the trade market is much higher than Paul’s, due to Ayton being younger. The Suns could get a decent trade package for him that would immediately add some depth to the roster.

While whatever trade happens with Ayton, it might not open too much cap space. Phoenix would need to take on contracts in a possible deal, but some money should be freed up. It would also allow the Suns to target a specific possession group for free agency.

Even if Ayton is not traded, the lack of bigs is apparent on this roster. There are not a lot of quality backups on the open market, outside of Mason Plumlee, who could end up being expensive, and Andre Drummond. If Ayton is traded, it might be smart to try to go after Brook Lopez if he is available. Lopez offers a lot of floor spacing while also being the defensive anchor this team needs.


If the Suns also manage to get out of Paul’s contract, that could make things interesting. In theory, Phoenix does not need to replace him with another point guard, given that Booker and Durant will have the ball in their hands all the time. Spending that extra money to sign more 3-and-D-type players could be crucial. Phoenix could try to go after a top player like Jerami Grant and fill the rest of the depth with other cheaper contracts of veterans looking to ring chase.

First Round Draft Picks

The Suns do not have a first-round draft pick, having used it to trade for Durant.

Possible Draft Plan

Outside of a late second-round pick, the Suns do not have much work to do for the draft. That is probably okay with them, given that they are focused on winning a championship, and veterans tend to be the way to that.

The Suns may try to trade that pick for a veteran role player if they can. If they can’t, they might select a player that had at least two seasons in college to be more NBA-ready and can shoot the three well.

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