writers would give some hardware to the Phoenix Suns

Jan 23, 2014, 5:30 PM | Updated: 5:30 pm

To the victor goes the spoils, and the more the Phoenix Suns win, the more likely they are to be recognized for their efforts.

As the 2013-14 season reaches its midway point, many publications are handing out their “midseason awards,” and is no different.

Their list, released Thursday, has a few of Suns on the list.

When asked to name the “Most Improved Player,” both Eric Bledsoe and Miles Plumlee received votes.

For Bledsoe, Chris Mannix wrote:

Before the season, there were whispers out of L.A. that Bledsoe could struggle in a starting role, that for all his speed and quickness he wasn’t well equipped to run a half court offense. Now? Bledsoe has answered those questions, and then some, driving Phoenix to a shocking — repeat, shocking — 19-11 start before being sidelined indefinitely with a knee injury. A terror in the open floor, Bledsoe has been efficient, too — he is tied for 32nd in the NBA in PER — while improving his field goal percentage to a career-best 48.6 percent. The aforementioned knee injury could cost him the award at the end of the season, but for the first half, it’s his.

On the shelf for now, Bledsoe has averages of 18 points, 5.8 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game. As a Clipper last season, his line was 8.5 points, 3.1 assists and 3 rebounds per contest, albeit in 13 fewer minutes per contest.

Bledsoe also earned a couple of “runner up” nominations, but it was Plumlee who got a vote from Lee Jenkins. He wrote wrote:

A year ago, Plumlee was sitting at the end of the bench in Indiana, on the fringe of the NBA. The Pacers lacked depth, yet still they hesitated to call on Plumlee, who averaged a meager 0.9 points in 3.9 minutes. The Pacers fortified their bench by acquiring Luis Scola from Phoenix in the summer. Plumlee was one of the afterthoughts — a throw-in, essentially — they sent back to the Suns. Now, Plumlee is a starting center, averaging nearly a double-double for a young team fighting for a playoff berth. The Suns are well positioned for the future and Plumlee is a major reason why.

The 25-year-old who barely played last season has started all 41 games for the Suns this season, averaging 9.7 points, 8.7 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game.

But the players were not the only ones to be recognized, as head coach Jeff Hornacek appeared on all five writers’ Coach of the Year ballots, earning the top spot on Rob Mahoney’s. In defense of his choice, Mahoney wrote:

If a coach’s primary responsibility is to put his players in a position to succeed, then none has done better work this season than Hornacek. It’s from his design that the Suns have been utterly tank-defiant, and it’s a testament to his rotation choices that Phoenix has few (if any) problematic lineups.

At 24-17, the Phoenix Suns have clearly surpassed whatever expectations most put on them heading into the season. If they maintain their current pace, chances are their efforts will again be recognized when the season comes to a close.

Phoenix Suns

Karl-Anthony Towns #32and Mike Conley #10 of the Minnesota Timberwolves react after Towns hit the g...
Kellan Olson

Timberwolves finally at full strength ahead of crucial matchup vs. Suns

The Phoenix Suns have a big-time game on Wednesday against the Minnesota Timberwolves, who have a few things coming together right now.
1 day ago
Kevin Durant #35 of the Phoenix Suns reacts after scoring in the second half against the Chicago Bu...
Arizona Sports

Phoenix Suns list Kevin Durant as questionable vs. Timberwolves

The Phoenix Suns are listing Kevin Durant as questionable for Wednesday's game against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
1 day ago
Phoenix Suns' Chris Paul, right, gets congratulations from Kevin Durant, left, and Devin Booker, mi...
Kevin Zimmerman

Mess of the West: Suns’ tiebreakers come into focus with 7 games left

Kevin Durant's return against the Minnesota Timberwolves could help the Phoenix Suns lock up an NBA standings tiebreaker.
1 day ago
Former NBA player Charles Barkley, center, watches West Virginia and Auburn from the sideline durin...
Arizona Sports

Charles Barkley dishes on Kevin Durant feud, CNN show plans

Charles Barkley talked about a potential new CNN show he could host with Gayle King, his feud with Kevin Durant and the Phoenix Suns.
1 day ago
Terrence Ross #8 of the Phoenix Suns drives against Kris Dunn #11 of the Utah Jazz during the first...
Kellan Olson

Phoenix Suns begin final 2 weeks of regular season with win vs. Jazz

The Phoenix Suns started the last eight games of their regular season with a win over the Utah Jazz on the road.
2 days ago
Deandre Ayton #22 of the Phoenix Suns high fives Torrey Craig #0 after scoring against the Utah Jaz...
Arizona Sports

Suns’ Deandre Ayton, Jazz’s Lauri Markkanen both available Monday

Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton is available after being ruled probable to return to the lineup Monday night at the Utah Jazz.
2 days ago writers would give some hardware to the Phoenix Suns