Posted on: December 24, 2008 4:35 pm

The Suns Bug

I've been bitten.  Once again, the Suns have aroused the interest of a devoted fan.  <o:p></o:p>

The Suns have broken my heart every season.  It is not the heart break like that of an Arizona Cardinals fan.  The Cardinals are never good enough to evoke championship conversation.  The Suns are in the hunt every year.  What if Joe Johnson wasn't mauled by Jerry Stackhouse?  What if Boris Diaw and Amar'e Stoudemire hadn't taken two steps over the line after Robert ' I look like Will Smith' Horry threw Steve Nash into the boards?  What if <st1:city w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">San Antonio</st1:place></st1:city> didn't exist?  What if.  <o:p></o:p>

After yet another early post-season exit last year, I was through.  I made up my mind that I would simply not care about the Phoenix Suns and their play entering the 2008-09 season.  After all, they traded away the Swiss Army Knife, Shawn Marion, for Shaquille O'Neal.  I have hated Shaq since his early days with the Orlando Magic.  He isn't good, he's just a mammoth human being.  How dare Steve Kerr and Robert Sarver attempt to make me like this guy.  Nash is getting old, Amar'e is still a beast, and Raja Bell is over rated (Okay Raja, here's your job: guard <st1:city w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Kobe</st1:place></st1:city>.  Oh, you can't?  Huh).  It was going to be east not watching Suns' games this year.<o:p></o:p>

What could change my TV viewing schedule?  Now that the Suns no longer matter in my realm, TV time with them would be time well spent.  There is no way I would watch them again this year, unless...<o:p></o:p>

Raja <st1:city w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Bell</st1:place></st1:city> and Boris Diaw for Jared Dudley and Jason Richardson.<o:p></o:p>

Shit.  I'm in.<o:p></o:p>

Trading away Raja Bell and Boris Diaw for Jason Richardson makes sense to me.  Raja, we love you for decking <st1:city w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Kobe</st1:place></st1:city>, but that's not guarding him.  Even when wide open, he may not always knock down the shot.  Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly appreciate everything he did for this franchise.  His clutch three point against the Los Angeles Clippers in the '05-'06 playoffs cemented his place in Suns history.  In my opinion, his stint with the Charlotte Bobcats will not be a good one.  No more wide open shots, and a team struggling to find an identity will equate to poor production for <st1:city w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Bell</st1:place></st1:city>.  Boris Diaw is a potent player on a team of superstars.  I believe that intimidated him into an inert state.  His offensive mindset can thrive in <st1:city w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Charlotte</st1:place></st1:city>, and he may well be an All Star in two seasons.  <o:p></o:p>

What do I get to watch every night?  Jason Richardson.  The Suns now have a potent scorer at the two spot, something they have lacked since the dismantling of the '04-'05 team, when Joe Johnson was a point machine.  The advantage of having J-Rich is he is always a threat to score.  He creates his own shots, be it shooting a pull up jumper, drowning a three ball, or driving to the rim at will.  Anyone who wears number 23 and attempts to emulate Michael Jordan is a steal in my mind.  He also has the chance to play on a winning team, something he has done once in his eight year career (the '05-'06 42-40 Golden State Warriors).  <st1:city w:st="on">Richardson</st1:city> brings a bit of youth to an aging team, seeing as he is four years younger than the departing <st1:city w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Bell</st1:place></st1:city>.  This guy could be a superstar soon.  I can't miss that!<o:p></o:p>

The Suns did something that they haven’t done in a while.  A good transaction.  I have always been a fan of Jason Richardson, and therefore it is easier to accept the trade (unlike the Shaq/Marion).  So yeah, I will tune in and watch as many Suns' games as my life schedule permits.  The Suns bug has bitten.  Does anyone have some disinfectant?<o:p></o:p>

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Category: NBA
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