Life comes at you fast. I learned that this week. One minute you're working on a long procrastinated home improvement project and the next you are laid up in bed with a bulging disc and a doctor politely explaining the reason you injured yourself is because you're getting old.
That has nothing to do with this post but if I'm stuck in bed for the next 20 hours with a bad back and not on air, I need to complain somehow.
Back to the NBA Draft. 10 days ago the Suns were planning a parade route for the NBA championship and now we're debating the 29th pick in the NBA Draft either needing to replace Cam Payne or make good for Jalen Smith.
Instead of bingeing some shows laid up in bed, I've been bingeing Youtube highlight videos and college basketball games featuring prospects the Suns may consider late the in first round.
Through it all, one clear top prospect has emerged on my board that is expected to be available at #29.
Before we get to the list, a quick qualifier. These are the players I would draft at #5. Spoiler alert, I'm not James Jones. I don't fall in love with the same prospects. For example, I would've drafted Tyrese Haliburton or Saddiq Bey last year - you can check the receipts.
The Suns are also uniquely positioned this year to scoop up any players that unexpectedly fall. Ziaire Williams would be a dream pick for the Suns. Usman Garuba would be an excellent addition. Jared Butler, if he falls to 29 unexpectedly feels like the perfect Suns pick.
Without further ado, here is this week's Top 5 Thursday:
Top 5 Suns Draft Options
5. Joe Wieskamp, F, Iowa
- Wieskamp is a very similar style player to Cam Johnson. He shot over 46% on over five three point attempts per game last season at Iowa. He may not have the off the bounce potential Johnson has shown but Wieskamp is not only insurance should the Suns find themselves outpriced down the road for the home grown wings but also immediately adds shooting depth to a bench that desperately needs it.
4. Tre Mann, G, Florida
- Mann separates himself a bit from the glut of guards available in the late first this year with his handle and ability to shake defenders in one on one situations. He's got a clean shot, making over 40% of his three's and 83% of his free throws but doesn't bring a whole lot to the table passing or defensively. With the Suns potentially seeking a microwave scorer, Mann can heat up quick.
3. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl
- The Suns dip back into the Villanova well here. Robinson-Earl is the perfect addition to the Suns front court with great size (6'9, 230), a nose for rebounding and a fundamentally strong approach. He likely could've played minutes in the 2020 postseason for Phoenix. In many ways, he projects as a Jae Crowder clone - while he didn't shoot a particularly impressive percentage from three this season, 28%, he had much better shooting numbers as a freshman plus he gobbled up nearly 9 boards per game. Robinson-Earl is Dario Saric sized with Jae Crowder's game. Sign me up.
2. Jaden Springer
- I fell in love with Jaden Springer on Youtube. Smooth offensively, a bulldog defensively and plenty of room to grow as just a 19 year old, Springer would be an excellent long term fit for the Suns. While I don't think he's a natural point guard that could be CP3's heir apparent, he has a chance to be an excellent two way combo guard a role always in high demand for championship caliber teams. The Tennessee product offers some of the best upside remaining at 29 overall.
1. Josh Christopher
- After seemingly wearing out his welcome in Phoenix with a completely underwhelming one and done pitstop in Tempe for the Sun Devils, Christopher gets a second chance at a first impression amongst the Valley basketball faithful. Christopher is the clear choice for the Suns at #29 if he's available. An NBA body with NBA scoring abilities, If Tre Mann is a microwave scorer, Christopher is an InstaPot scorer. Christopher could upgrade the Suns bench scoring from Day 1 with the long term potential to eventually pair with Devin Booker in a devastating offensive backcourt. When you are drafting late in the first, there are very rarely any guarantees - Christopher is a virtual guarantee to play a decade in the league. Josh Christopher makes the Suns better tomorrow and down the road.
Other receiving votes: Bones Hyland, JT Thor, Charles Bassey, Luka Garza, Ayo Dosunmu