The first half of the Phoenix Suns’ 2017 season: By the numbers
With 42 games in the books, the Phoenix Suns can focus on the second half of the 2017 season. At 16-26, Phoenix is 11th in the conference standings.
Prior to Tuesday’s games, the Suns currently sit 5.5 games out of the playoff picture despite a shaky start. Under interim coach Jay Triano, the team has made small strides that can also be attributed to elevated play from T.J. Warren and Devin Booker.
What got the Suns to where they are today? Here’s a recap of the first half of the season, by the numbers.
The Suns are the youngest team in the NBA with an average age of 24.5 years. Four of the five starters are 24 years old or younger with Tyson Chandler (35) as the outlier.
Only three players have suited up and played in every game for Phoenix this season — Marquese Chriss, Dragan Bender and Troy Daniels. A season-ending ACL tear to Brandon Knight and meniscus tear to Alan Williams are just two of the many injuries that have plagued the Suns.
On Nov. 6, Devin Booker became the fourth-youngest player to reach 3,000 career points. The only players to do it faster? LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony.
Earl Watson was on the wrong side of history as an 0-3 start claimed his job five days into the season. Jay Triano was assigned interim coaching duties and is 16-23 since Watson’s departure. The firing is the second fastest in NBA history, trailing Dolph Schayes and his one-game stint with the Buffalo Braves.
Devin Booker is the eighth-highest scorer in the league at 24.9 points per game. In his third season, Booker has drastically improved, elevating his field goal, three-point and free throw percentages while raising his rebounds (4.4) and assists (4.3) per game.
Circling back to being one of the youngest teams in the NBA, the Suns have 13 players on their roster who have played four or fewer seasons. Of that number, nine have played no more than two years.
While Knight, Greg Monroe and Jared Dudley are veterans, none have the resume of Tyson Chandler. On the sixth team of his 16-year career, Chandler remains a serviceable option. While occasionally sitting out on back-to-back games, he is averaging nearly 26 minutes a night and pulling down just under 10 rebounds per game.
The 2017-2018 salary cap is listed just above $99 million . The Suns rank 28th in the league in salary and are one of seven teams currently under the cap. Greg Monroe is the highest paid player in Phoenix at $17.8 million this season.
Phoenix won 24 games last season but is on pace to finish the season 31-51. The potential improvement would be the franchise’s most wins since the 2014-2015 season when it finished 39-43.
Last season, the Suns won their 16th game on February 3. It was their 50th game of the year. After a 14-point win over the Thunder on Sunday, Phoenix collected win number 16 in Game 42.
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