How quickly one forgets.
It’s easy to do in a society filled with everyday distractions like bad reality television, dealing with snowbirds on our Valley roads or cringing over how “The Grand Canyon State” will be embarrassingly mocked by national media for our latest mis-step.
My guess is you, like many, tried to block our or simply eliminate what was arguably the most embarrassing season in Phoenix Suns history last year.
Last summer Ryan McDonough brought hope and a plan. Jeff Hornacek provided a familiar face but more importantly an old-school approach stressing effort, attention to detail and playing and believing not only in the system they play, but in each other.
Phoenix’s success (44-31) has caught everybody, probably even themselves, by surprise.
Last season the Suns won three games in March. This year they won 10.
Still, as my fingers hit the keyboard, Planet Orange finds themselves on the outside looking in of the Western Conference Playoff picture. To me, it doesn’t matter if the Suns’ season extends another week, maybe two.
The identity of the franchise has been re-established.
Robert Sarver’s court-side antics are gone, as are the snickers from around the league.
Goran Dragic is a star.
Eric Bledsoe has been everything the club expected and more.
Gerald Green and Miles Plumlee have gone from roster-fillers to big-time contributors.
The Suns have gone retro: harking back to their 2005 slogan of “making basketball fun again.”
The days of re-building and “Riggin’ for Wiggins” have been replaced by promise for the present but more importantly, the future.
The Suns have risen and the best is yet to come.
What a difference a year makes.